Flight of the Bumble Bees ?

Dec 28, 1998

by Graham Conway Aug 18, 2001

On March 18, 2001, UFO British Columbia received an e-mail from a gentleman living in Roberts Creek, on the Sunshine Coast. It was in response to a request we had put in the local Sechelt paper asking for UFO sightings. For fear of being ridiculed he had kept this story within his family for over 2 years. The following is an excerpt from an e-mail that he had written to his sister living in eastern Canada. The sighting took place on December 28, 1998.

I promised I would write down my 2nd UFO encounter. Here it is. UFO, as in unidentified flying objects; not necessarily big, nor high in the sky. Ask "Bob" to recall the church parking lot which is out back of our place, to the north, where we look out at Mount Elphinstone. It was the Monday after Christmas and before New Years, December 28th to be exact. I had been at work and was home, and "Kate" had gone to bed before me. So, I stayed up and trolled thru the channels until I got completely bored with TV and decided to go to bed. I was quite tired, and it had been an atrocious day for weather. In fact, the wind was strong from the East, (i.e. from right to left as one looks out on our deck towards the north) and the rain was sheeting (another BC word) down. No-one was out that night, believe me, no one. Just a truly ugly night outside. There is one light on the parking lot, a bright parking-lot type light, on the far side, by the fence, near the condos to the north of us on the far side of the church property. There were some low interior lights on inside the church, as usual, but not a soul there, no cars in the parking lot.

I headed out to the deck for the nightcap cigarette, and as I was sliding the door open, (no screen this time, no danger of a sudden encounter with woven wire) I saw what looked like two red lights circling about, approximately 75 feet away, a couple of feet above the gravel. Bob, remember that the far half of the lot is paved, where the buses parked, and the first 60 feet or so of the lot from the fence north are gravel/grass. The lights were 2-3 feet above the ground, slightly to the right of due north, and not as far away from me as the street is from your front door. They were below my height, so I was looking down slightly at them, and they were very near the ground. What did they look like? Like the passive red reflectors on the back of a bicycle, or the red reflectors people nail up to a stick and then plant at the end of a road or driveway. They whirled around each other, bright, small, no sound, like two flies when you see a few flies in the middle of a room oscillating around each other. The motion was fly-like, or very smooth, more smooth than birds, who dart from point to point. I couldn't see anything except this small red glow, maybe 1-2 inches across, no shape, no noise, no shadow, no glow on the ground, nuttin honey. I stepped out on the deck, staring directly at this sight, my heart pounding.

The much vaunted "Jones" analytical brain kicked in... I thought some kids with a Christmas gift of radio-controlled airplanes - no, not a sound, these suckers would be loud, and expensive, judging by the tight, fast path of travel - then, fireflies, yeah, that's the ticket, huge, motivated, rain-loving Hawaiian fireflies blown north by the jetstream path from Hawaii to BC (that's exactly the path of the weather that week, I checked - and no, there are no bright red, continuously lit fireflies recorded in Hawaii or anywhere, I checked THAT too - and no people, dogs, cats, Kate, neighbours, buses, churchgoers, in fact anything that would be considered a witness) and just at that point, one rose, turned north and flew off like a bee, the other one following, crossed the lot and disappeared in about 1/2 second. Total time of event, maybe 5 seconds - one seriously freaked out "George" standing on the deck wondering what the hell THAT had been all about...

Believe me, searching the Net for UFO stories about red fireflies is a complete waste of time. Nothing, nada, nil, rien. It's been a month, and the hairs on the back of my neck still stand up when I think about it like right now. Two possibilities:

1) Living - not an encouraging concept. What glows like bicycle light, flies like a bee, is out on a dark rainy night, and takes off when yours truly shows up? I looked - no fireflies continuously lit show up anywhere. All my instincts lean towards the idea of living, particularly the motion - just like two flying insects circling each other then the escape path north. If you ever watch a bee take off, it climbs before accelerating away, not the other way around - this was exactly like that - I'll show you sometime

2) Not live - less encouraging still - There was an article very recently in the Economist about the development of small scale battlefield drones for reconnaisance purposes - Lockheed is the recipient of a multi-million dollar budget to develop stuff that would weight less than a pound and be somewhat autonomous - not this decade, though, and what (or who) would be goofing around in the dank outback of Gibsons between Xmas and New Year's flying state-of-the-art prototypes and scaring the daylights out of the innocent bystander?

Now you know. Believe me, this story is not embellished. This is exactly as I remember it, and I've remembered it a lot this past month. I have literally no idea, but the strongest impression that I was watching something living. By the way, nothing in the local paper, but I'm not going to tell anyone local, for fear of being tarred as a loonie forever, and I suspect that if anyone else saw something like this, they ain't talking either. So, two weird sightings, both local, both within the year, one witnessed by Kate, and not an ax to grind in sight. After a lifetime of looking and not seing anything weird, I'm the lucky recipient....twice.