Farm-life is full of fixing things, and this week for my in-laws’ farm was no different. The main pump for the pasture water went out, so off we go to help. I use the ‘we’ liberally here—99.9% of the time I watch the men fix because I have no clue how to help.
Behind my husband and father-in-law, I mosey into the pump-house next to the pond where the water collects from the artesian (free flowing) well. I gasp. In the corner is the biggest wasps’ nest I’ve ever seen. My father-in-law asks me if I saw the snake he chased out of the pump-house the day before. A snake? Now I’m trying to eye both the floor and the corner swarming with wasps coming in and out. Thank goodness the snake never showed up.
Once he realizes what’s got me so freaked out he sits down on an overturned bucket with a chuckle. “Don’t go swatting at them and you’ll be fine.”
“Why don’t you get rid of them?” I’d always been taught they were dangerous.
“This far from the house they ain’t hurting nothing, and they help pollenate my pastures and kill other more harmful insects.”
Wow! It was cool to learn they actually served a purpose beyond their aggressive stinging natures. That doesn’t mean I’ll be allowing any of them to come and attach themselves to my home. Useful or not, I know firsthand how much their stings hurt.