Do you know anybody who is really nosey ? Someone who won't stop nagging you until you tell them what's in your sandwiches and what colour underpants you've got on ?

Well, Brian's not like that. He likes to ask lots of questions, but clever ones, not nosey ones. Questions like where can we go to see yellow snow? Can pigs fly if they really try? And what is a walrus and why?

But there is one big thing he really wants to know.

He knows that they are yellow and black, have wings and stings, and live in hives where they keep their honey.

But can you tell him, please - do bees have knees ?

Please don't rush out into your garden to find a bee to search for his knees. It's probably dark out there, and you'll only usually see bees where there are sun and flowers.

But in Brian's garden just now, there is sun and plenty of flowers ...

but are there any bees ?

Let's see !

Just outside the back door, there's a mole poking out of a hole. But he's too busy thinking of his lunch (a lovely cheese roll) to hear Brian ask about bees and their whereabouts.

Perhaps that fox striding up the path can help. Too late! He's jumped over the wall, on his way to the shops. And anyway his mind is definitely on birds, not bees.

What about those two rhinos, paddling in the pond ? "Have you seen any bees ?" Brian asks them. "I want to see if they have knees"

"No, we haven't" they say. "We're not allowed near the flowers, because we get the hay fever. Our noses are running enough already."

Best leave them to make busy with their handkerchiefs.

What about asking something that lives in the sky whether they have seen any bees flying by ?

But these five baby birds won't help. They are too busy fighting over who gets to sleep in the vest that their mum brought back with the last lot of worms.

Brian, how about finding some other insects ? They might have a better idea than animals and birds about what bees get up to and where they might be hiding.

Over there, on the patio. Ants. We can ask them.

Oh, how embarrassing ! Look away. They're only wearing underpants.

Ants in their pants ?!

Suddenly loud music appears from nowhere. Now that's why they were on the patio - the ants have come to dance.

Their ant moves are good to watch, but they can't hear Brian over the noise.

"Do you know where I can find some bees ?" he shouts. But all he hears back is the "boom boom chaka boom" of the ant music.

It's very nice to know that these things are in Brian's garden. But, oh dear, they are not really what we're looking for.

We're looking for little insects. The ones with black and yellow stripes. With stings and wings. But they are not wasps.

Where are the bees ?

But over the wall - what's that coming ?

Lots of buzzes and plenty of humming !

As quick as he can, Brian climbs up to the top of the wall.

He sees lots of bees ! And they're playing football.

Of course, they're wearing shorts, so it's easy to tell - bees do have knees, and elbows as well !

So bees have knees. That was worth finding out.

But do ants really wear pants ? No chance !

Reproduced with the kind permission of Debbie Paterson -the story was specially written for her to read to Robert and Mary.

ddddddddddd