After using my spade for 40 years, I broke the shaft recently. I must be getting stronger! On my way back from Yeovile today I saw signs advertising a car boot sale so drove in hoping to find an affordable replacement. As I got out of the car in the massive car park, the woman in the next car told her companion: ‘This is Chris Slade: he keeps bees in Maiden Newton’. I know her face but can’t put a name to it.
It turned out that the companion is her Father, who also keeps bees! I asked him where, as he didn’t have a local accent. He has 40 hives in Queensland! So, of course, we got talking and he was interested in whether I feed my bees as he has heard that the practice over here is to rob the bees blind and feed them syrup. I assured him that I don’t normally feed my bees at all. Neither does he as, normally, there is year round forage for bees.
No, I didn’t find a spade. I saw somebody walking round with one they’d bought that maybe I’d have been able to snap up if I hadn’t been talking!