Tucked away in a corner in Hampstead Heath is a small walled area with a green door within Kenwood Nurseries which is home to possibly one of the best club houses I’ve ever been to. After the snow we’ve been having, it was a lovely sunny day and complete pleasure to be invited to North London Beekeepers annual Shed party! I continue to be fascinated by the art of beekeeping, the behaviour of bees, and the behaviour and stories of beekeepers. There is always a lovely atmosphere of calm in class that was also present at the party, so I really had to hold in my excitement. Standing in the bee’s flight path and jumping up and down would not be a good idea so I didn’t do that (no I didn’t!). Instead I stood side by side with young veteran Mary who helped me identify what plants the bees were collecting pollen from based on the little discs of yellow pollen from their hind legs (pollen baskets), and matching it with her pollen chart – we thought the Pussy Willow. The North London Beekeepers have been keeping bees and making honey since the 1930s. Over some home cooked party food and hot elderflower cordial, I disclosed to a new fellow beekeeper how last year I had bought a book called Meditation and the Art of Beekeeping, had skipped all the meditation and was fascinated by the beekeeping part. She suggested I went back and read the meditation parts too as I’ll be needing it for beekeeping. She is of course right. As I looked around, I was the only one with a few bees flying at my head – they really do sense everything. Wearing a strong smelling deodorant didn’t help either.
So next visit – odorless, hair tied back and state of calm. The latter will be difficult as I’m already so excited at the thought!
Maybe you’ll find more excitement looking at hot beekeepers here?!