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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Horseback Adventure

Freedom, horse gear, hard work, and a journey that will stay with you forever

‘You don’t need all that gear, look what motorcyclists take.’ I was shown two small panniers, not much bigger than handbags, hooked on the back of a bike.

This is one of the comments I’ve received on the equipment we carried when we trekked in the Australian bush with five horse; it’s all listed out in the back of the book A Standard Journey, or you can see it all here: via pictures.

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Mid journey, this was after we had whittled down the equipment even more – bare necessities here!

Bike vs Horse
For a start, if you are camping out with your motorbike and you need something, you can hop on your bike and speed off at 80 km to the nearest shops. You can’t do that on a horse that’s just trekked for six to eight hours carrying your world possessions and you!

Secondly, bikes don’t need feeding, grooming, first aid, rugs, boots, saddles, saddle blankets, fencing, electric fence equipment, water buckets, nose bags… and on it goes.

We'd just unloaded here - next job (once the horses were taken care of) was to sort our gear and pitch the tent

We’d just unloaded here – next job (once the horses were taken care of) was to sort our gear and pitch the tent

Personal equipment
I’d say fifty percent of the equipment comprised saddles (riding and pack – five in total) saddle blankets, halters and reins. You can’t get very far without any of this.

We were throwing out the hard panniers and buying back-packs - the saddle is in the camp shop - they are big and heavy

We were throwing out the hard panniers and buying back-packs – the saddle is in the camp shop – they are big and heavy

Forty percent of the gear would be for the horses, the fencing, water buckets, rugs, food, grooming kit, first aid kit…. etc

Our camp - second tent phase! The grey lump near the horses is all the horse gear

Our camp – second tent phase! The grey lump near the horses is all the horse gear

That leaves ten percent for Noel and I. That’s five percent each for clothes, food, cooking gear, first aid kit, tent and… well that was pretty much it!

First set up with hard panniers

First set up with hard panniers

Second, and much improved, set up, with back-packs

Second, and much improved, set up, with back-packs

Compromises
We made comprises and worked harder than we ever did in our entire lives. But there were great rewards, we had one mobile phone for emergencies and ninety percent of the time that had no signal. We had no internet, no car to run, no office to sit in. What we had was nature, freedom and five of the most incredible horses you will ever read about.

Freedom

Freedom

Take a look at our photo album of our trip and if you’d like to read the story, here’s the link. You can read an excerpt first if you want…. then the reviews.

Charity
I donate fifty percent of profits to horse charities, here’s a website on  A Helping Hand for Horses.

oh and BTW, I’ve just reduced the ebook price.

What are you waiting for?

What they are saying

‘A hauntingly beautiful book.’

‘This will stick with readers for a long time’

‘The journey was not all they had expected’

‘The trail presented obstacles at every turn’

‘The journey itself makes for incredibly engaging & interesting reading’

‘The details of the trip are fascinating’

‘I couldn’t put it down’

‘The horses are as real and vividly drawn as the humans in this book.’

‘The moments when the horses get “naughty” are hilarious’


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5 young horses, 2 old people, and 1 new tent!

A Standard Journey

The day I galloped down a steep incline to find a gun to shoot one of our horses, was the day I realised that I may have bitten off more than I could chew.?????????????????????? It was Noel’s idea. Not shooting the horse, but living with horses 24/7 while trekking along part of the Bicentennial National Trail in Australia. When he mentioned the trail for a second time in one week, I knew we’d be doing it. We’re nomadic folk. During our seventeen years together we’ve sailed around the world one-and-a-half-times, become professional skippers and now live on a Dutch barge in France. Amid this mayhem we rescued five scatty, scared horses and slowly transformed the seven of us into a team. ???????????????????????????????There were elements of success and elements of failure. The initial realisation that I hadn’t ridden for twenty years and Noel hadn’t ridden for fifty was quite sobering. The stark comprehension that we were now middle aged was a painful one – literally. The joy of transforming those lost boys into strong, confident ‘war-horses’ was sometimes overwhelming. At the start the boys wouldn’t step into a puddle – imagine the emotions when they tackled steep ravines, faced-off bolshie kangaroos and plowed through deep rivers.?????????????????????? I sometimes indulged in the enormity of my responsibility. The desolation of our failure still punctures my heart. The yet unanswered desire to return and make the journey a success is still vivid. The heart-break of saying farewell to our boys, our family – will never leave me. There are plans that are slowly unravelling in my mind – we will tackle this once more.?????????????????????? The growth and realisation that – actually – we did succeed; we survived (at times it was an extremely close thing), we turned those boys into useful, brave animals by loving them and giving them a chance.?????????????????????? And, did we shoot the horse? Well there’s a story; a story that will help rescue more of these incredible animals. In June this year I will publish our escapade, warts and all – a percentage of proceeds will be donated to saving more horses-lives. Come join me on a thrilling ride! Up to date information our FB page ‘For the love of horses’.???????????????????????????????In the meantime, read more about our watery adventures here.


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Make it happen – just do it!

“If you want something you’ve never had, you’ve got to do something you’ve never done!”

An old friend (‘old’ as in long-time, not years – right DD?) inspired this blog. She has a lot to offer the world but doesn’t believe it.

So, I’ll say again…

“If you want something you’ve never had, you’ve got to do something you’ve never done!”

I wanted to publish a book; I had to become an author, a publisher and a marketing expert (still a way to go with that last one!) It was tough, very tough (and still is), but I wanted it that badly I made it happen.

I now want to help rescue Australian Standard-bred horses. But how, on earth, do I do that from a boat in France?

I love these boys with all my heart

I love these boys with all my heart

I’ll keep writing. My next book is about two very sore bottoms, five ‘four-legged’ friends, one tent and a heart-warming, hysterical story.

Noel and I spent a few months riding along the Bicentennial National Trail of Australia. We adopted (rescued) five scared, scatty horses and set off with a tent and not much else.

A percentage of proceeds, from this story, will be donated to the SPPHA (The Standard Pleasure and Performance Horse Association), who do a fantastic job in re-homing retired trotters that are otherwise, set to be put down. Trotters which are usually young, worn out, badly treated and have so much to offer.

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Whether it is something close to your heart, naked cartwheels (see previous blog!), or taking those first tentative steps to putting yourself out there and earning money with work you are in control of … take those steps…. if you want something you’ve never had, you’ve got to do something you’ve never done…

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In the meantime you can read of our adventures on the high seas here.