This half year has flown by in a blur of activity, or so it seems. I had a spectacular birthday party in January in our garden. I’ve been trying to upload a picture for you of the garden in its carefully nurtured state on the day (all big thanks to Michael, my husband, who set out to give me a birthday party to top all birthdays. However the photos I have on my computer will not upload so maybe later… Michael and Kathryn, Brendan and Nicola and Paul did a fantastic job, aided by their dear children. I had a wonderful time and have been on a high for months since. Anyway, the party was just the beginning…
By the end of February, the lovely Helen Caldwell was here. Not only a fantastic farm helper, Helen is a writer and we had many wonderful conversations during her five week stay, as we dug gardens, painted walls, weeded, weeded, weeded and stacked the firewood I am burning as I write this, and she was a great encourager when it came time to send my novel off to publishers.
In March, Michael and I were off to WOMAD for the weekend and what a weekend of music, dancing and eating from all over the world.It was also the month of the Big Hot Air Balloon festival and Helen and I leapt out of bed very early in the morning to go down and watch the sleeping giants pumped full of gas before they floated away into the blue.
And before we knew it, it was April, time to prepare for Easter weddings and Easter egg hunts for grandchildren, to let go of Helen as she went to explore the thrills and spills of working on a big dairy farm AND we had a wonderful visit from Marion Le, a very special cousin from my father’s side of the family.
May started very badly with the loss of a young friend in a terrible car crash. I was privileged to conduct her funeral and meet some of her many wonderful young friends. Lots of sorrow is still being expressed for a spirited young person who loved and was loved intensely and is missed very badly.
I had been invited to presemt a workshop at the Weaving Stories Together Storytelling Conference in Sydney on the 6th June and flew off with great excitement and some nervousness. It’s always wonderful to meet up with old storytelling friends and this year was no exception, to listen to stories, to reconnect in that way only story manages and to feed the soul. Here’s a link to some highlights.
The weekend flew by and I climbed onto a bus to Canberra to visit my cousin Marion Le. What a week that was. Marion’s large family is welcoming and warm, her son cooked a fabulous feast whilst Marion took me around the sights of the city. I felt as if I had known them all for a long, long time and look forward to seeing them in New Zealand at my place in the future.
Everyone remarked how similar Mario and I were in appearance which only enhanced our feeling that we ‘belonged.’
Here is Marion standing outside Parliament Building an amazing piece of architecture. And now it’s July and I am in the third week of the How Writers Write Poetry that the University of Iowa are offering online. This is one of the most stimulating experiences I have had online but more of that later…