The Wasp Party

Yesterday afternoon my attention was drawn to what looked like an interesting party taking place on a table  in a pub garden on the banks of the River Nene at Barnwell Upper Lock. Wasps were flying in and out of a pint glass that had a couple of centimeters of cider in the bottom. Some came to the party, hovered around a bit, and then left. Others had taken up prime positions so they could sample the cider, and they seemed to be quite content. Still others sampled the drink, then struggled a bit to get airborne and make their way to the exit. All human life was there, except that it was limited to those in striped shirts.

I began to wonder about the etiquette surrounding wasp parties and the kind of things they would enjoy. Obviously the alcohol would be an attraction, and the chance to socialise – even though this might only be with their own bothers and sisters. I imagine that the invitations would say that you should BYOB – bring your own bluebottle. The whole place would be buzzing once “Dancing Queen” began to blare out from the little music system. Tommy Roe’s “Sugar, sugar, you are my candy girl” would start to raise the temperature on the dance floor, and wasps in dark glasses would start dealing in £10 sugar wraps. A fight would break out when a wasp thought he was being dissed by the bumble bee bouncer that had been hired for the night.

By early light, a crooked line of wasps would be staggering along the street, like Barcelona taxis, some still clasping plastic cups with the dregs of their favourite brew, others with the giveaway signs of lipstick and burnt sugar on their shirts. Another night with a sting in the tail. Like I said, all human life…


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