Me versus the yellow jackets

Published 10:17 am Thursday, June 23, 2022

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one with the sun

in trackless fields

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of yellow grass and thistle, scent

of humid heavy air and the wing music

of bees and flies.


~ Albert Frank Moritz, excerpt from “One with the Sun”


Yellow jacket: 3 – Me: 0 


I went to water raised-planter boxes for friends one late evening, summer’s golden light slanting lazily through rows of lemon-yellow sunflowers; ripening blueberries hanging from backyard bushes. “Not quite ready for bears to pick,” I said, taste-testing berries, to Mirri the Cat as we ambled through the garden. 


The two of us got to work watering lettuce, flowers…and unwittingly an irate yellow jacket, who crawled out from under a wilted leaf, dive-bombing warp-speed at my face. The evil thing didn’t let up, although he got a hard blast of water and loud curses as he hurtled against my arm, stabbing again and again. 


Those demons don’t let up. I didn’t dare mash him, because they WILL call their minions for reinforcement. Thinking fast, I hosed the painful stings with cool water. The facial one was just a graze, not as bad as the rest. 


The enemy is out there, Dear Reader. Dressed in yellow and black stripes, lurking with bad intent under lettuce leaves and innocent-looking places. He returned the next evening, buzzing the same area. You better believe I performed full recon ahead of watering! This time, I gave him a wide berth—plotting retaliation once I find the nest. Payback’s coming, pal. 


Saluda Tailgate Market is Friday at the west city parking lot location off Main Street, 4:30-6 p.m. 


Saluda Library has summer storytime sessions for ages 2-5 on Tuesdays at 10:30, through August 3. 


The Top of the Grade Summer Concert Series returns at McCreery Park with Fancy and the Gentlemen on June 24, 7-9 p.m. Bring chairs or blankets; coolers welcome. These concerts are made possible through a grant from Polk County Community Foundation, coordinated by Saluda Downtown Foundation and the City of Saluda. Lazybirds play on July 22; Peggy Ratusz on August 26. 


Pot luck/bingo night at Saluda Center is June 27, 6 p.m. 


Saluda Presbyterian Church plans a “Thank You Celebration” on July 2, 11:30 on the front lawn with food, fun and fellowship to highlight what donations and hard work can do to help restore a small historic Saluda treasure. 


The 58th Annual Coon Dog Day is July 9 with activities scheduled from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. including live music, food, coon dog judging, and street dances; the parade starts at 11 a.m. The Saluda 5K is a project/fundraiser for Saluda Elementary School; it begins on Main Street at 8 a.m. and follows the traditional Coon Dog Day 5k route.


Happy June Birthday to Nancy Barnett, Verne Dawson, Peggy Ellwood, Anna Jackson, Charlie Jackson, Amy Violet Ford, Terry Arrington, Julie Arrington, Susie Welsh Hearn, Jeremy Edwards, Eleanor Morgan, Mary Lu Price, Sigi Hendrickson, Edna McKee, Lucinda Pittman, D.J. Gaskin, Susan Matthews, Lisa Duck, Kasey Watkins, Elena Robson, Karen McGee, Jane Mann, and Chambli Dawn Stuber. 


Feel free to contact me at, (828) 817-6765, P.O. Box 331, Saluda, NC 28773, Facebook, or visit