On a bright spring morning, I set off from the idyllic lakeside resort town of Bled to meet one of Slovenia's 10,000 beekeepers and see for myself why the country has such widespread affection and respect for the Carniolan honeybee.
Because he lives in a 21-story building and "bees don't like high rises too much" (too windy), Guillermo Fernandez keeps bees in a tiny public garden below Wall Street, next to the Staten Island Ferry Terminal.
I've been a beekeeper for a year now. Each weekend I wake up shortly after the sun. I put on clean denim overalls, sandals, my cotton sunhat and veil and I climb my steep iron ladder with smoker in hand.