The humidity was down yesterday so I thought I would do a little yardwork. Wild morning glories are taking over the fence between our backyard and the park behind our house, and they are obstructing the view. I have been pulling them out before they go to seed. After a few minutes by the fence I decided it was too hot. As I started to leave, I felt something hit my arm and the side of my face. It was enough to trigger my hyperactive startle reflex and for a moment I lost my balance. By the time I regained my balance my left arm and the left side of my face and neck were covered with bees. Apparently I ran over their nest in the grass beside the fence. To get away I had to have my right hand on the joystick that controls my wheelchair. Consequently, I could not beat them off. I did stop momentarily a couple of times to knock some off my ear. In doing so I knocked my sunglasses off. No stopping to pick them up. After I got 30-40 feet away most of the bees turned back but a few followed me all the way into the house. I headed straight for the Benadryl. I also took some Tylenol at WebMD?s suggestion. The real story was the pain. In the 63 + years of my spinal cord injury I have never experienced such excruciating pain. My left arm and side of my face and neck throbbed. When I took off my pants last night I found sting blotches all the way up to my knees. They even had gotten into my pant legs. In the wee hours of the morning the pain began to abate. Then my arm and face started to itch. I did not sleep at all last night. Currently I have moderate pain and itching. Cortaide is controlling the itching pretty good.

If I had gotten stuck in a hole or something by the fence I am convinced that I would be dead now. Getting away was my only option. I do not know what kind of bees they were. They seem pretty common around here. They are about a third the size of honey bees, and have black abdomens with yellow stripes like most bees have. Obviously, they live in the grass or ground.