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Graham Bradley and Bees

I was born in January, 1945 and grew up on a farm in North Central Illinois. My nearly 97 year old Dad still lives on the home place, although is now in a Nursing Home in our home town. My Dad’s younger brother’s son and grandsons now farm the home place. This story takes me back to when I was about 12 or so years old. Even though I already had done a lot of “farming” with Dad and my older brother and had mowed hay with a borrowed AC CA Tractor and side mower, this was the first time Dad was to have me mow with his 1939 Graham Bradley Tractor and rear mounted David Bradley mower. So we went out to the oat field which had just been harvested and was going to cut the “stubble” to kill any weeds which may have grown up below the oats. Dad was driving to show me how to use the Graham Bradley and mower when the mower bar got plugged up. So he raised the cutting bar, (he has Hydraulic on this Tractor) and backed up, but the mower bar would not unplug. So he shut the power off to the mower and tells me to get off the tractor and pull the plug out by hand. As I reach down and grab a big hand-full of the grass and stuff, out come a swarm of bees! Well they are not happy and start stinging me all over and of course my first reaction is to run like heck. Just then I remember to drop to the ground and they fly right over me. I get back up and go back to Dad and the tractor and he pulls out his old “farmer’s” hankie and dips it into the gas tank on the tractor. He starts dabbing each bee sting with gasoline from the tank. We did not do any more mowing that day, and would you believe I did not get sick at all and the stings did not even swell up any. I even went to a church youth function the next day. Dad said that the leaded gas from the old tractor back then is what made me not have any reaction to the bee stings. I now live in Glendale, AZ and have told that story to many people over the years. None of them want to believe it, but it sure made sense to a young “farmer” on that day.

John, AZ, entered 2013-07-29
My Email Address: Not Displayed

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