I shouldn’t be surprised by this; trying to interview busy beekeepers in the middle of the beekeeping season is almost impossible. It would appear to be an activity best reserved for the winter months, when our buzzing little friends are tightly clustered in their hives, no doubt dreaming of the day it will stop raining. In fact, that sounds like me in the winter. Come to think of it, I wonder just how many days a year I get to see actual blue sky? It can’t be many.
I was in Andalusia in April where the sky was very blue and the lavender was alive with the sounds of industrious insects. I often holiday in Cyprus where the sky is also exceedingly blue, although my favourite time is at night when I can lay back by the pool, stare up at the clear night sky and see an amazing explosion of stars, planets and galaxies far far away…And a few years ago I visited a friend in Saskatoon in the Canadian midwest, where the sky is so big and so blue that I found it hard to look where I was walking because the temptation to just look up was so powerful. Manchester is not like that. Here, we just accept the inevitable; that that the sun does exist but we won’t see it today.
The reason for my digression into meteorology, apart from the fact that I’m British and therefore somewhat obsessed, is that in two weeks I travel to Vermont, USA to meet Mike Palmer, a bee farmer who knows more about bees than most bees do. I am excited to be able to interview Mike and see his apiaries, but there is also an outside chance that I might see some blue sky, trees, lakes and hills, which makes the trip very worthwhile – even worth the jet lag which turns me into a zombie for days at each end of the trip.
I am very grateful to Mike for agreeing to see me at such a busy time. It means that the fantastic, bestselling and life affirming book that I am writing is going to be more than just a dream. Can’t wait!