Jackie Parry – author


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Where Is The Best Office In The World?

Here of course….. sailing along the NSW coast in Australia, on our way to our next adventure.

Sailing (and writing) in my slippers along the NSW coast

Sailing in my slippers! And Writing – this was the beginning of Of Foreign Build… Note the bikes (bike wheels upside down outside the stanchions), the outboard is under the blue canvas by my head. We were on our way!

 

Perhaps in a TSR (Travelling Stock Route) on the BNT (Bicentennial National Trail) with 5 horses and a tent…

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Somewhere nearby there are five very happy horses, gallavanting, galloping, and rolling in the creek! Meanwhile, notes on the horse trekking book A Standard Journey started here….

 

What about on a 1920s Dutch barge in France? Not bad, but we were (and still are) renovating – it’s a noisy, dusty, and messy place to live and work.

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Magdalena Bay, Mexico – the cafe was closed but wifi was on!

In beautiful locations the work doesn't stop!

We’d recently purchased Pyewacket in San Francisco and were on our way to La Paz… but plans changed rapidly. We spent two years sailing back to Australia via Pitcairn and Easter Island, etc…. a tough journey – detail of which in my next book This Is It, out January 2016.

 

On a barrel in the boat yard in Panama?

The dinghy dock payment each day was good fun too!

Well at least I got to stay relatively clean!

 

Puttering along the Intracoastal Waterway of America. Near South Carolina on our 10 metre sailing boat Mariah II.

I make time to write anywhere/anytime!

Flat water sailing – yippee!

I’m a travel writer – literally. If you want to travel and work you can – you just have to make it happen.

Where’s your favourite office? Where’s the most exotic, fun, extreme place you’ve worked?

 

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Barefoot and Fancy-Free

Our horse trek through the Australian bush had the foundations of freedom and independence. Not only were our five boys barefoot but they were bit-less too, i.e.we rode in rope halters – the packing horses were led via halters too. (You can read more about that here).

Dom, Stevie (ridden) and Spirit at the back

Dom, Stevie (ridden) and Spirit at the back

We encountered not one problem with this ethos, except more road work than we envisaged and, therefore, more use of the boots. The bit-less idea worked beautifully. Although I did purchase a specific halter with more leverage for Charlie and his ‘suitcase-sized’ head that he put to good use when he spotted juicy grass!

Charlie, in his halter with extra leverage!

Charlie, in his halter with extra leverage!

I didn’t carry out endless research on barefoot riding, it just seemed to make sense. So, I was intrigued to recently read Linda Chamberlain’s A Barefoot Journey: The story of one woman’s fight against horse shoes.

Boots!

Boots!

Linda’s true story is about her fight against horse shoes. She feared metal shoes were harming horses. In this light-hearted account she tells how she battled with her farrier, coped with derision from other riders and saved a horse from slaughter. Mistakes, falls and triumphs are recorded against the background of a divided equine world which was defending the tradition of shoeing…with prosecutions.

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We fostered an incredible bond with our boys (five Standardbreds) and I now believe the start of that remarkable journey was removing their shoes as soon as they came to us.

Happy, healthy boys!

Happy, healthy boys! This is the team I went trail riding with – Spirit, Dom, Stevie, Charlie and Ned

Here’s the review I have written for Linda’s book. Her book’s on Amazon, here.

Review for: A Barefoot Journey

A true story combining her experience and the technical proof that barefoot is what, as horse lovers, we all should be doing.

My boys’ shoes were removed as soon as they got to us. Truly, though, I didn’t understand the magnitude of the damage shoes can do. I wanted them barefoot for the trail riding we were doing – we didn’t have bits in their mouths either, the journey was all about freedom. But it’s logical when you think about it. That’s why her friend at the hospital in the story got it. He didn’t know anything about horses, but the barefoot care made perfect sense to him.

Carrie's rotten feet after the shoes fell off (When Linda first took ownership of Carrie)

Carrie’s rotten feet after the shoes fell off (When Linda first took ownership of Carrie)

As well as passionate about horses, I am passionate about sailing. For many years I was barefoot on a boat, for weeks at sea. My feet actually got bigger, they spread, they became tougher – horses’ feet are the same – they’re flexible, not a lump of nothing at the end of their leg.

 Carrie leading the way, getting better

Carrie leading the way, getting better

But my knowledge extend to the depths of Linda’s I am embarrassed to say. I, too, had horses shod when I was younger. Linda’s story is clever in that you learn along with her. She states the believers and the non-believers case. She doesn’t hold back when she encounters problems in her quest to have all her horses barefoot.

Told with searing honesty, some humour (I giggled at Linda’s antics falling off), and technical explanations -simply written, so they don’t put your head in a spin – this is a must read for anyone with horses or thinking about getting one. It’s also for any animal lover and people who just like to hear tales of people doing the right thing – even if it means sleepless nights, a possible jail term, and wild nightmares.

Thank you Linda, you’ve made a controversial subject so plain and simple to understand. This story was told over fifteen years ago and I know the industry is far more open now – but I also know there are some people still against it. It’s a story that’s still relevant today and will be for a long time to come.

A thoroughly enjoyable read.

Linda's second book - which I've just purchased!

Linda’s second book – which I’ve just purchased!


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Whirlwind UK Book Tour A Success! And Cake.

Two radio interviews, two events, and numerous roast dinners!

The past few weeks have been a whirlwind of family and friends catch-up and events for my recent release A Standard Journey – 5 horses, 2 people, and 1 tent.

The story is about how we adopted five Standardbred horses, trained them (and they us). The seven of us then set out into the Australian bush for several months; all our belongings carried by horse.

I donate 50%+ profits to horse/animal charities and this led to me a guest appearance at the Redwings Sanctuary at Oxhill and their stand at The Horse Of The Year Show.

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At Redwings Oxhill, just before the reading/signing. I tried not to reveal the outcome of a dramatic event in the book, but the audience were desperate to know!

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Redwings do a wonderful job – their team at Oxhill are extraordinary in their passion and care.

I had a wonderful time at the Horse Of The Year Show connecting with readers and helping Redwings raise money via their merchandise (including A Standard Journey), to help rescue more horses.

Redwings Stand and their wonderful team. My books are near the front.

Redwings Stand and their wonderful team. My books are near the front.

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They did a lovely job with my table and I added the bookmarks and koalas which went down a treat!

Radio!

Between the mayhem of driving around the country I was invited onto two radio shows (one with Noel).

Firstly, with the incredible Carol Graham. Carol is an author, radio talk show host, health coach, motivational speaker, blogger, businesses woman, mum and grandmum!

Carol is a wonderful interviewer and here you can hear her easy-listening interviews with extraordinary people. She deftly shares their laughter and inspirational stories, and encourages everyone to never… ever… give up hope.

My interview will be appearing shortly – I’ll put the link here and give another shout out when it’s ready!

The BBC

Lastly, we met Nick Coffer from BBC 3Counties Radio. We had great fun chatting to Nick (who thinks we need therapy!), and left mini koalas hanging all over his studio to make our presence known and remembered. Here’s the link to listen, jump forward to around 37 minutes – the interview runs for about fifteen.

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Having fun before we went in the studio.

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With Nick Coffer, having a great time!

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I could get used to this (note the koalas taking over!)

Roast Dinners

Several yummy roast dinners, care of my lovely mum, kept me going (and tightened the jeans somewhat).

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… and CAKE, you’ve got to have CAKE!

I learned a great deal from all these events. Switching from social media to ‘getting out there’ has really worked for me, and is so much more fun.

I’ll write a blog soon on what I learned and what I’d do differently next time.

Has anyone else had great success and fun ‘getting out there’?