1935 – 13 October 2018
Author & Beekeeper
Sue Hubbel, wrote the two books that inspired me to get into beekeeping. “A Country Year” re-lit my childhood interested in bees, and the “A Book of Bees” gave me bee-fever. Her book “A Country Year” is up there with “A Year in Provence” by Peter Mayle and “We Took to the Woods” by Louise Dickinson Rich for exploring a new beginning in an alien culture and marks her journey from heartbreak back to a self-sufficient person.
I re-read both books on my summer vacation in the Wilds of Maine, which was the perfect place to explore some of the questions she asks about nature and people. I walked the roads and edge of the lake looking for the various flora an fauna that s native to where I was. It was perfect and reminded me of where the growth of my wanting to keep bees came from.
Hubbel’s choices in running a business with true husbandry inspire me. Her choices to simplify and standardize her equipment, and thinking about the what she has time for and having to prep for her busy harvest times showed real grit. I so admire her always showing measured care of her bees, but not coddling a laying-worker hive (i.e., no time for dither, shake out, combine hive resources, and bye!).
I mourn the loss of Sue Hubbell’s voice and wish there were more books ob beekeeping. I wonder who she read, her reading list would be fascinating to me. She passed away in Bar Harbour, Maine, I wished I’d know that she was there. I would have loved to have met her. I will have to settle for listening to her voice through her books. Her wry humor will be missed.