I am selling my car today. It is an older vehicle, nice and well-kept, but still old. I loved that car. It was white, with black trim and dark windows, earning it the nickname, Snoopy. And then it blew a head gasket, and…well, RIP Snoops. So, now I am selling it for whatever I can get. I put an ad on Craigslist, and got a few hits right away.
One quite persistent fellow wanted to have his man deliver to me a cashier’s check, and would have the vehicle shipped once the check cleared. He would even add in some extra cash if I would guarantee him the vehicle right there over text. How nice of him. Tempting, but no, Mr. Nigerian Prince. I drive a hard bargain.
Then another fellow wanted to come in about an hour, sending me into a frenzy as I had just listed it, and hadn’t had time to properly prepare the vehicle for sale. I knew I had a few things in the back, and the inside could probably use a vacuum. So, I opened the car after six months of non-use, to find yellowjackets nesting inside the door frame. I freaked out. The guy was coming in 45 minutes. And, well, bees and I have an understanding…you stay over there, and I’ll stay over here, and we will all live happily ever after. The end.
Now, as I watched these hornets crawl all over each other in a paper clump they had fashioned on the inside of my car, I was going to have to violate this seminal law of nature. Live and let live, had turned into dominion of the earth, or at least survival of the fittest, the laws of the jungle. And it was up to me, and no one else. And the clock was ticking. 43 minutes…42….So, I grabbed the longest handled broom I could find. I figured I would knock the thing down, and then run like a screaming banshee for all I was worth. This was a logical plan, sort of. But, in the moment, I just couldn’t do it.
I stood about twenty feet away, and watched the moving horde of black, and yellow with their tapered wings, and the adrenaline that wisely screamed, “danger,” blared as a pounding drum in my ears.
But the clock ticked on. So, I aimed in the general direction of the open car door. I wielded my sword like a blindman groping about, with about fifteen feet of empty air between me and the vehicle. I tried again, this time correcting my foot stance into a lunge position for proper swordmanship, and fleeing at the same time. I wished I had time to watch some YouTube videos on fencing. I banish the thought. No time for that. The clock was still ticking. I groped again, this time hitting the door near the nest, managing to simply alert the bees that trouble may be afoot. The swarmed the area, and I dropped the broom, and ran like hell squealing the whole way home.
From the safety of the porch, I watched the bees settle back down, and I contemplated my next move. The nest must come down. There was no way around it. So, I found a slightly longer broom and tried twice more, this time the bees caught onto me, and chased me halfway across the yard. That was it. It just wasn’t going to happen. With trembling fingers, I texted the guy that something had “come up,” (the bees…up out of their nest) and would he mind coming tomorrow? His answer was a cool, “Sure.” I calmed down, and called my dad. I needed a male type for this.
He arrived later that night, and straight away opened the door. He grabbed a dish towel, walked right up to the nest, and confidently swatted the bees down. That was it?! They swarmed him for a few seconds, and he batted at them like annoying flies. But, then, in the space of about two minutes the whole ordeal was over. Except, he explained as an afterthought, he got stung once, but he was alright. “I’d get stung for you any day,” he said. Aww…
So, now the guy is coming this afternoon, to see a hornet free car. So, I am putting together my selling points, and trying not to be nervous. But, I will probably spend the whole day quaking with nerves driving myself crazy trying to reimagine the various scenarios and questions I will face on this transaction. I am too emotional to do these sorts of things. I wish it were easier