Thank you all for your kind, kind messages while I've been gone, which have touched my heart more than words can express. The "Life Stuff" that has been dominating my time is not quite over yet, but I'm going to try to post again, at least as often as I'm able to.
The songs today are for the bumblebees that gave our house its name, Bumblehill. And for bee lovers Amal El-Mohtar (author of The Honey Month) and Chagford fabric artist Angharad Barlow (creator of Sustainable Stylings and Atelier Bee).
Above: "Save the Bees" by the brilliant Anglo-Scots folk trio Lau, filmed in 2012.
Below: "The Hum" by the Yorkshire folk duo O'Hooley & Tidow, filmed earlier this year in Leeds.
Above: "Beekeeper" by singer-songwriter Aoife O'Donavan, from Boston, performing solo at McCabe's in Santa Montica last December.
In the last video today, Andy Letcher (another Chagford friend) explains the inspiration behind his band Telling the Bees. I highly recommend both of the band's CDs (with cover art by Rima Staines for an added bonus). Their lovely song "Telling the Bees" is not online, but you can listen to an equally lovely song, "Blackbird" here.
"Telling the bees" is an old English folk custom -- which many still practice today -- in which bees are kept informed of all significant events in family and village life.
Amal with Tilly at the top of Nattadon Hill a while back. They've been good friends since Tilly was a pup. "We have, " Amal says, "each of us, a story that is uniquely ours -- a narrative arc that we can walk with purpose once we figure out what it is." (Tapping the Long Tale)
Angharad in her beautiful bee coat. "The earth bee," she says, "enables the energy, spirit and ideas to exit the cloth, so that nothing can get trapped and the magic can flow in and around the wearer.