This story has a beginning and a middle, but, as yet, no end. It starts like this:
Recently the 'Love-of-My-Life', also known as the 'prime mover of heavy honey boxes and wielder of the extractor handle', told me "I need a bigger garage". After mentally reviewing the monolithic structure which tends to dominate our 1/4 acre section, I then try to visualise the local council's reaction to such a statement, after their shocked reaction when we applied for permission to build the current structure (not many residential properties have garages of an equivalent size to the house!)
"OK" I reply, trying to envisage our home on stilts so that he can acquire more hoarding space underneath. No, his answer is to move house. In fact, to move to a bigger property, but with a smaller house so there is more room for a bigger garage.
Having established a clear picture of his requirements in this respect, (super large garage, house incidental, provide photo and measurements of garage) I then begin a tour of local 'open homes', at the end of which I know all the land agents on a first name basis, and on the understanding that I not make derogatory comments about their 'wonderfully situated, not-a-thing-to-be-done', write-ups, they agree not to call me about every dog or chook house they honour with their 'Open House' sign.
Having badgered the neighbour (small house, room for garaging, nice area) to see whether he wants to sell (he doesn't!), and canvassed the street, we eventually settle on a box-like structure on an adjacent road. Big section, small house, room for humungous garaging, and a bit of room left over for the beehives, out of sight of passers-by. But - within 5km of home!
Fortunately I am blessed (well, that's one word for it, there have been others!) with a brother on a lifestyle block. Out with the scale map (one inch to the mile) and the metric ruler. Cheers - 9cm between he and us as the Bee flies. Up at an ungodly hour to close up the entrances to the hives, hitch up the trailer, a short sharp discussion with the 'Prime Mover' as to why hives joined by propolis can't just be shifted without strapping, carefully strap and carry hives on-board, and we're off.
Lifestyle blocks come in a variety of shapes and presentation. My brother's is a clay-tracked, pukeko-ridden windswept swamp where, unfortunately, only the pukekos seem to be thriving. However, out with a pallet, a large polythene sheet (damp course you know), and on with the hives. Brother recommends that we not only leave the individual straps on the two hives, but that we also add a couple of heavy duty strops right around the pallet as insurance against the wind. Having previously visited when the wind was blowing lightly, and having to grip strainer posts to maintain ground zero, I concur with this recommendation.
Home to sew grass seed on the bare patch left by the hives.
Not so Innocent Bystander