The bees took it hard this winter, although the rain is always welcome, too much can cause excessive moisture in the hive. It made it hard for our “California Girls” to keep the mold from forming on the pollen stores. Plus the ground became so saturated that an errant tree fell over and crush five hives. The remaining hives seem to be above average, as Garrison Keillor would say, and hopefully produce a fine crop of honey. A recent run of the Crankshaft Comic strip has made the whole new year tolerable.