restaurant buzz

As if doing business in St. Croix isn’t fun and challenging enough, I had a new first on a recent, fine August Sunday at eat @ cane bay. I’m not talking about hurricanes, rampant flu, mutiny among the staff, lack of business, unpaid purveyors or any run-of-the-mill disasters that force a temporary shut down of a restaurant.

We had to close because of bees–angry bees. These bees weren’t gonna let us open, no way, no how. We had to raise the white flag. Normally Sundays are packed, and we were going to have live reggae, so it would usually be my busiest day of the week, if not month. That being said, unless the Governor has a curfew we are open regular hours, period. It’s a trait my hubby and I share, instilled upon us by our former boss. We don’t close for parades in C’sted, heavy rain & wind, or lack of power, let alone on a whim.

So, back up a few years. We were aware of a HUGE beehive adjacent to the restaurant. Picture a VW Bug approximately 40 feet high in the limb of a tree, except it’s not a VW Bug, it’s a beehive. After big events like Mardi Croix on the North Shore, the bees would come out for all the sweet things they can get. No bottle of Midori or Cruzan rum was safe behind the bar. Some of our bartenders are braver than others, but they all have been subject to a few stings here and there. None are anaphylactic allergic, thankfully. Generally, the bees would mellow and go back to hive after a day or so, and we would resume living harmoniously.

Recently, however, we’ve had more and more bees chillaxing at the bar drinking fruity rum drinks. No one wants to sit next to a bee, not good conversation at all. I don’t mind the bees until they start making me lose business, then they become more like a cockroach or an ant, or worse, a rat. You just want to get rid of them. But, unlike any of the aforementioned pests, you instantly become a “hater” if you want to get rid of the bees. Forget about the fact that you will lose major dollars as the angry bees drive business away. Loads of people have given us advice; luckily we happen to have quite a few bee experts here on St. Croix.

I hated to interfere with them, but they had to go. I didn’t realize that it would get worse before it got better. After a bucket truck and 2 men, 3 hours and my profit from the day before, I innocently thought my problem had been solved. No such luck. Ack! The next morning the displaced bees were so thick you could practically inhale them. No bueno, cannot open and endanger customers and staff. What does one do?

Don’t bee bitter, just bee happy and let it bee. If life gives you bees try to make honey. Put up signs telling people “closed due to angry dis-placed bees”. We didn’t have to try too hard to enjoy our forced day off.