I have a theory that everyone has a phobia. Some people can't deal with snakes. Some scream at spiders. Some won't go in the ocean. My irrational fear is bees.
Apiphobia or melissophobia is the fear of bees. I'm better than I used to be about it. I no longer run screaming from bees. Now I just run. How deep is my fear? Let me share a couple of my bee stories.
Most recently, I attended the South Florida Fair. In one of the buildings there was a display of vegetables and rare fruit. There were also bees. A honeycomb glassed in so you could see the bees at work and a larger screened in room with a beekeeper outfit hanging nearby. I immediately went to the other end of the building. When I was done looking at the other exhibits, I went to leave. Three exits were at the end of the building. Two of them had bee displays next to them. I headed for the other one. There was a lone bee laying in wait for me. I retreated. I may have yelped. I looked helplessly at my friend. She grabbed my arm and walked me past the bees to the door keeping herself between us all the while reassuring me that she wouldn't let them get me. I couldn't have done it on my own. My fear literally stopped me in my tracks. Thankfully I have good friends.
One day I was outside at work having a smoke and checking my cell phone when a bee buzzed by my ear. I ran. The bee flew off. My coworker came running outside. "Where did he go?"she asked me.
"Where did who go?" "You ran by the front looking terrified! What happened?" "It was a bee."
One day she may let me live it down. But not anytime soon.
Then the best story of all. I was working overnight at the coffee shop. I was sweeping the floor and looked down and on the floor was a bee. I jumped back and threw the broom at it. It was one in the morning. I was alone in the shop with a bee. I called my friend.
"Do you care about me?" "Of course. Why?" "Will you come down and rescue me?" "What's wrong??" "A bee is in here and I made it mad." "You're lucky I love you." "I really know it. Please hurry."
While I was waiting for her to show up I went back out to the front to keep an eye on the bee. Who knows what it was up to. I saw it still on the floor where I had left it. My mad throw with the broom had knocked off one of it's wings. But it was crawling slowly towards me. Any minute it would get that last burst of strength fly up and sting me in the eye and I'd die.
By the time my friend got there she swept up the now dead bee and tossed it in the trash for me. And barely even laughed at me. I owe her for forever.
By the way, I have no reason to be scared of bees. I'm not allergic. I've been stung before. I didn't see it coming and just felt the sting. It didn't hurt that bad. I just can't help it. They are death with creepy legs and yellow stripes.
What are you scared of?