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A couple weekends ago, Shaun, Richard and I went to an Open House that a Ranch near Greenville, TX was having. It ended up being much more like a harvest festival atmosphere than what I was expecting and we enjoyed ourselves. We learned about it through their booth at the Coppell Farmer’s Market and couldn’t pass it up.
Granted, Rehoboth Ranch is geared almost exclusively towards raising cattle, goats, and chickens, and I am obviously more interested in vegetable gardens, but this was still a great visit. Besides various tours around the ranch, they also had some booths that the organic-minded would find helpful.
The single most fascinating part of the entire trip was talking to a bee keeper. Now, I know that after watching "The March of the Penguins" I said that penguins were my favorite animal, but I’m going to have to take it up a notch and say that Honey Bees just might be my favorite organism in the entire planet. They are absolutely mind-blowing and I would love to keep a colony in the backyard (not happening for a couple reasons, though…namely, the stingers and a newborn might not mix.) I’ve got a PBS documentary about Bees on the way to me from Blockbuster and I can’t wait to watch it! But these guys are geniuses. When a worker bee goes out and finds flowers, he returns to the hive and performs a waggle dance which communicates the distance and direction of the nectar to the other bees! As the bee keeper said, they are architects because they design the geometrically perfect hive, engineers because they construct it, chefs because they make food and artists because they’re dancers. They’re all little da Vinci’s.
We learned a lot and enjoyed the trip. Next time though, I suspect we’ll visit a farm where we can sink our fingers in the soil.