Written by Alison Fielding. (December 2018)
Happy Christmas Everyone!
Happy 1st Christmas Arlo x.
Love Alison x (Nonna)
I have never been particularly impulsive or had much opportunity or freedom to travel, but on the 22nd October last year I took an unplanned and unexpected trip from the north to the south….. of my wooden stairs! The memory of laying in a dazed crumpled heap, trembling and nauseous from the effects of shock and pain still haunts me. Aware that my phone had shot across the floor, and my only companion being a very concerned and very waggy tailed spaniel x named Jess, I had no choice but to lay still and let the initial shock pass. Somehow in the darkness I was eventually able to reach my phone and call for help. A broken rib , whiplash and soft tissue bruising which has caused prolonged pain and discomfort has left me pretty grounded this year, but it has also brought with it the opportunity to take more unexpected journeys and travel to places I had never thought of visiting and all I had to do was turn a page. A good friend who has sat with me many times over the last year bought me the first book in Lucinda Rileys’ 7 book series ‘The Seven Sisters’ and that is where my adventures began.
My first trip took me to Brazil and the city of Rio de Janeiro as I boarded a plane and followed Maia on her journey to discover her roots. As she began to uncover the intriguing details of her ancestry we also took a trip to Paris as her links to the building of the ‘The Christo’ were uncovered, and the search for a sculptor took us to that romantic city. I was lost in other worlds from cover to cover and thankfully transported away from my own reality.
My second journey followed Ally, another of the sisters as she too went in search of her own truth, but this time instead of the heat of the tropics we were led to the ‘icy beauty of Norway’. This journey had me spellbound not only for the dramatic sights of the mountains and fjords, but as Ally discovered her connections to the unknown singer in the premiere of Peer Gynt so I discovered a love for a style of music that I had previously rarely entertained. Grieg’s “Morning mood’ is now often heard coming from my bedroom although an appreciation from other household members may take a bit more time.
Although a little weary from my previous travels I couldn’t wait to begin the next journey which this time was closer to home. With each turned page of ‘The Shadow sister’ I developed a great affection for Star as she becomes the next sibling to delve tentatively into her past. This time with a climate I was more accustomed to we traveled together from a small bookshop in London to the majestic mountains and lakes of Cumbria then on to the ‘Garden of England’ in Kent. Star, on her journey to discover where she came from also begins to discover herself as she steps courageously out of the shadows and into her own light. The historical links in this story captivated my interest and I totally second one of the back page reviews which said that it was ‘Absolutely impossible to put down’.
They say that the ‘best journeys take you home’ and over the last few months I have felt more ‘at home’ than I have done in a while. These books have become such a part of my life that the wait of a few months until the next sister Ce Ce begins her journey in the fourth book seemed endless, and an author detour with a glimpse into life in Provence was needed to fill the gap. I have had some incredible times, and maybe one day they will become more of a reality , but for now I am just thankful for the unexpected experiences and the best part of all is that I didn’t even have to pack a case.
Many thanks to my daughter Charlotte for joining me at times. It was much more fun enjoying the journeys with a fellow traveller. Looking forward to more great discussions. X