I've already made a few posts without introducing myself, I'm sorry about that. Here's a bit about me and my experience with bees....
I live in Melbourne, in the South East of Australia, a city of nearly 4 million people. My father and grandfather were incredibly passionate about bees, both being serious sideliners at one time or another in the 50's and 60's. I remember when I was 7 my grandfather showing me a huge galvanised iron tank of honey he had collected, that seemed to almost reach the sky! I always took a passing interest in bees, but never really rolled up my sleeves and kept a hive. A few simple things stuck (funny stories about bees crawling and stinging at night etc!), but basically I'm a raw beginner. Last year my Dad died, leaving behind 7 hives. The family was going to give them away, so I decided to take them over. It's like my father and grandfather are there with me sometimes when I'm with my bees now, they are a great reminder of my ancestors and how passionate they were about life, bees, and everything they did.
Anyway, the bees are an hour and a half drive away and it's been hard work trying to stay in front of them and learn the same time. That's why this forum has been such a great help to me, I've been able to ask others for advice and then go put it to use. I've become completely hooked now and spend way too much time reading this forum, re-reading the various books I've accumulated, and day dreaming about bees!
I've grown the hives from 7 to 10, and I recently devised a way of having some hives down here in my home, which is only a mile or so from the city centre. It's taken a lot of hard work to build a two story platform to put them on, but last night I finished it and moved 3 hives down here. I'm looking forward to posting some photos of the whole thing, it's the first thing many visitors to our house will see and is quite unusual to say the least!
Anyway, thanks again to all for your help and I am looking forward to one day having learnt enough to be able to help others too.