Remember the old days when an apiary visit meant going round to somebody's apiary on a balmy weekend afternoon, having a bit of a chinwag before donning the garb and going and poking into their hives as a precursor to a sumptuous pool tea during which there is an autopsy on the hive inspection plus a chance to bring up personal (and preferably bee related) problems and stories? Well, the next meeting will be just like that (weather not guaranteed) at the home of John and Joy Shearer, near Tregynon.
Members who have joined in the last twelve months or so will not have experienced these delights, and you are strongly urged to come along and enjoy it for yourselves. As usual, spouses and family also welcome. Who knows, you might be inspired to share your own apiary with the members next year?
These events usually had a theme, but bear with me, this one may have two. One aspect of the visit will be a comparison of what is a very successful and productive apiary of some twenty or so hives within flying distance of the MBKA apiary at Gregynog which, so far at least, has not produced honey in more than teaspoon quantities. Perhaps this is due to the amount of interference the Gregynog bees get when the whole of MBKA descend upon them for what are usually lengthy and intrusive inspections, not always in the ideal weather conditions. Discuss. Plus we have been promised a mystery event by our two Bs*, John and David. Apparently wet suits are not required, but I can say no more.
Finally a note on the pool tea. For many this is the highlight of an apiary visit with the chance to tell your best bee stories and tuck into the selection of (mostly homemade) sandwiches, pies, cakes, buns, biscuits and general picnickery. The MBKA tea urn and coffee jugs will also be dusted off and brought out of retirement. If you are intending to attend, please do phone the host in advance to notify numbers and also check whether to brng sweet or savoury (note that early callers will have a more open choice!). We don't want a repeat of that pool tea where alarmingly everybody brought ham sandwiches and nothing else.
So, look forward to seeing you there and fingers crossed that the summer weather does finally arrive.
* Beavan and Bennett respectively.