Leave it to a flash mob to change the entire scene.
At first, there was only one dancing about, wigglin’ and high steppin’. Then on cue, another — and then another — joined-in to bust a few moves. After that, there was rockin’ and rollin’ to beat the band.
“Aieeeeee!!!!” we screamed in unison as we fled the picnic table. “It’s hornets!”
Within moments, these voracious insects — dressed for dinner in yellow jackets — had boogied their way into our peaceful camp setting, overwhelming our delectable spread by sheer numbers. The mob ruled.
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This wasn’t exactly the lesson we’d planned for our grandkids in the great outdoors.
“Now if you’ll just sit quietly,” Grandpa Bill intoned as the beasties gorged on our salmon, “you’ll see that they won’t bother you."
I refused to return to the table.
“Have they left yet?” one grandchild squeaked from the safety of the tent trailer, his hunger momentarily resurrecting courage as he cracked open the door.
I timidly waltzed toward the gaily striped tablecloth, my eye on Bill who casually brushed the critters aside. Could it be, I wondered, that a laid-back audience could survive this horde of uninvited guests?
“Now, kids,” I yelled in the direction of the camper as I peered at my paper plate within easy reach. “There’s really nothing to be afraid of if you move slowly.”
One greedy hornet munched on an edge of my salmon. It was time to tango.
My hand moved gracefully in what seemed measured to me, but probably not in bug time — especially if you have magnifying saucers for eyes.
There was the buzz of wings and a flash of yellow. With a twist and shout I did a quick step to the camper.
“Slam the door!” my daughter Tiffany sang out while grandsons Luke and Joshua echoed their mom. “Let’s eat inside!”
I looked at the comfy seating, their plates, napkins and forks lined peacefully side by side; nary an insect crawling on the table.
In a flash, my decision was made. We’d leave the great outdoors to the writhing mob.