Jackie Parry – author


6 Comments

Writing Competition

Short Story Writing Competition

I won this month!

June’s travel writing competition, that Robert Fear hosts, attracted many talented writers. This morning I received notification that I won this month.

They are all short stories related to travel – some of the yarns will surprise you, all will delight you.

Here’s a copy of my story, click here to read the others, you won’t be disappointed.

“You’re finally settling down?” Friends are intrigued.
“Well, no. We still travel but on home land, not foreign.” We explain.

I’ve discovered that travel is your mind’s view, not just your eyes’. Our own park-land replaces far-flung cultures. We still explore exotic communities, only this location fits better, like a warm, floppy jumper.

Now, the tender whicker from a happy horse saying g’day replaces the mellow swish of parting ocean waves.

The travel-music of boisterous, hull-pounding seas is usurped by sixteen strong hooves thundering against native grasses, feisty back-legs hurled in the air just for the hell of it! Their hoof-beats are my heart-beats.

Before, when watching thick fog roll over the vast plains of salt water to swallow us into its chilly wisps, my shoulders rose up to my ears as I tensed sensing unseen dangers. Now, as the mist claims our valley I calmly ignore the night-time brisk that nips at my extremities, and I witness the white swirls settle as a waterfall would slide into a river.

There’s no town illumination to dampen the cosmic display. The clear nights reveal mystifying galaxies that hang above us with such clarity that a sharp intake of breath could draw them in. The blackness is so silent we whisper, fearful that the glass stars may shatter.

Fragrant black coffee wafts through our tiny, temporary home, the steam rising in sync with the morning mist. The tang of sweet smelling grass, earthy mud, sun-cream, grainy horse feed, burning logs, damp socks – are the aromas of fulfillment.

The mileage may be limited, but not my journey or freedom. Seventy acres of undulating heaven needs care, as do we. The steep-hill-exercise will keep us fit and strong long into our dotage. We take care of the land, it takes care of us.

As I take in the surroundings, I notice the vibrant bush fights for supremacy along the ridges and tall trees become custodian to flitting birds; a playground of leafy limbs for our feathery friends.

Proud gums come alive with squawks and chirps. Rainbow lorikeets flash by, flapping fire-red, ocean-blue and deep-sea green; in a pause between the cacophony the Kookaburras cut the stillness with a hearty cackle, are they laughing at us?

The creek hums a lullaby as it roams along pink and grey rocks painting them a shiny black. The clear icy water strays along the sandy bed carving new paths after flood rain, pushing at reeds that wave a farewell.

We’re creating our own travel history on romantic moors and enticing peaks. I’m awash with besotted intrigue – what’s around the next corner? Is that a new tree? Beautiful weeds are classed as noxious. I fight for control pulling, bagging, burning the grasses that want to take over but are not permitted. It’s hard labour that keeps my butt tight with effort, just like the constant moving on a sailboat during our sea voyages.

On the land, marauding wombats scratch cavernous holes under the cover of darkness, leading into a labyrinth of tunnels, like giant rabbit warrens. Beneath the scorching sun, wedged-tailed eagles swoop on air currents, their splendid tableau unique to them. Ants scurry within their mounded battlefields ready to take on a giant human at a moment’s notice.

Evening comes too fast, but we greet her with a cool beer and dirt-smudged faces. My hands feel the stretch of dryness and the sting of cracks, sore muscles remind me that I’ve achieved middle-age, my torn, grubby clothes don’t matter because I wear a bright, satisfied smile.

Travel changes you. You change while everything back at home stays the same. Here, at our home, there’s a surprising synchronicity – time, place and people are changing together. Noel and I are in harmony. A perfect choir of love.

But as with each journey, my soul is reshaped. I’ve bid farewell to places where I know I’ll miss the people and the lands, but also a part of me because I’ll never be that way again.

I wonder what part of me I’ll leave in which corner of our natural Disneyland. And what new thoughts and outlooks I’ll collect to replace what I’ve left behind; refreshing my layers with a view for every occasion.

Wonderful view

View for every occasion


10 Comments

Firm Butt Solution – It works!

Weed helps fight the flab!

Working hard? Have a free therapy session!

So, everyone wants a nice tight tush right?

Well, you don’t need a gym, you don’t need to pay your way to gain a pert posterior AND it doesn’t feel like exercise.

Actually, it is just like a therapy session.

Getting Weed!

Come to visit us (or any local land owner) and offer to pull up their fireweed!

The Benefits

  • You are outside, enjoying this fabulous autumn
  • It gives you a chance to let your mind wander
  • You are doing physical exercise without feeling like you are
  • In just a few days your butt tightens right up! Believe me!

Freebie!

Come here, far south coast of NSW, it’s like a free gym – I’ll even give you a cuppa!


16 Comments

Where in the World do you Write?

I can write anywhere

Over the years of travel I’ve always made time for writing.

At school I wrote, through jobs – I wrote. Then I started writing for myself – there’s much more motivation there!

Here are some of the places where I’ve made camp and tapped away (‘thumped’ Noel says) on the keyboard.

Isla de Cocos - note the wet trousers (from knee down) we were anchored out and dinghied in avoiding the sharks nipping at our feet!

Isla de Cocos – note the wet trousers (from the knee down) we were anchored out and dinghied in avoiding the sharks nipping at our feet and stepped out of the dinghy too early!

 

Magdelana Mexico

Magdelana, Mexico

 

In a TSR (Travelling Stock Reserve) while trekking with our 5 adopted horses - just Noel, me, our 5 boys and the occasional bit of writing!

In a TSR (Travelling Stock Reserve) while trekking with our 5 adopted horses – just Noel, me, our 5 boys and the occasional bit of writing!

 

One of my favourite pictures - sailing (and writing) in my slippers along the NSW coast. On board our first boat Mariah II

One of my favourite pictures – sailing (and writing) in my slippers along the NSW coast. On board our first boat Mariah II

 

Renovating a 1920 Dutch barge in France. In the background was welding, grinding, hammering etc - it was bedlam and very hard to work/live in the same room as the renovations!

Renovating our 1920 Dutch barge in France. In the background was welding, grinding, hammering etc – it was bedlam and very hard to work/live in the same room as the renovations! (Love the jim-jams!)

 

On board Mariah II again, traversing The Great Loop - a year long adventure through the USA and Canada that I still miss today!

On board Mariah II again, traversing The Great Loop – a year long adventure through the USA and Canada that I still miss today!

 

 

On board our Dutch barge again - with Lily the cat who adopted us! And we're still renovating.

On board our Dutch barge again – with Lily the cat who adopted us! And we’re still renovating.

In NSW, Australia - we are dismantling an American Barn - so part of the way through the process.... I tap away!

In NSW, Australia – we are dismantling an American Barn. Part-way through the process…. I tap away!

Where do you/can you write?

 


7 Comments

My Mum – My Self Appointed PR Rep

My mum is Brilliant…

…and probably about to be arrested!

Unique PR

I produced some rather snazzy bookmarks, detailing my books/adventures. My mum hands them out to anyone she meets or whoever knocks on her front door. She’s brilliant – my No.1 fan – and quite passionate!

She has just written me a note about accosting someone famous on my behalf! She’s either brilliant or mad – but probably both. She says:

On the way home Dad went into Sainsbury’s car park to get the papers and a few bits and whilst I sat in the car. You’ll never guess who walked passed, ONLY Paul Young!! I smashed on the window and leapt out of the car and said who I was plus you and ENPC (Enfield Chase Pony Club).  I think he thought I was some mad woman accosting him.  I blurted out your CV and could have kicked myself as I didn’t have any BOOKMARKS to give him. What an absolute chump am I!  Anyway, I mentioned www.jackieandnoelsjourneys.com and think he got it but he was in a hurry and had to get away.”

Mum’s not totally loopy – Paul’s daughter used to be a team member of Enfield Chace Prince Philip Cup Team and my mum and dad used to manage this team – so she did know him (and, I believe, he has sailing on his bucket list).

I was suitably impressed, as the first album I ever purchased was No Parlez. The first time I saw Paul was on daytime TV, after Rainbow, I was off sick from school – I’ve admired his work ever since.

I think Mum deserves a pay-rise, I’ve offered her double what she receives now – I think that’s fair.

ordinary-peopleextraordinary-adventures

I’ve offered Paul an audio, kindle or paperback book – I wonder if he’ll receive my message – perhaps he’s a little scared…..   not from my mum – but selling up and living your dream is a brave step…


4 Comments

Inspirational Gifts

It’s not just a book.

There’s a message.

An uninhabited island in the South Pacific - I dare you to travel with us?

An uninhabited island in the South Pacific – I dare you to travel with us?

“The words are inspirational.”

“These stories will make you think.”

Colour pictures included in each book.

Make this year’s gifts special, thoughtful…..  be unique!

When your man looks better in a skirt than you do!

When your man looks better in a skirt than you do!

Best places to purchase the colour paperbacks:

UK/USA (and most other places): click here

Australia: click here 

Available in kindle format and audio: click here

Suwarrow - no strangers here....

Suwarrow – no strangers here….

Follow our escapades here: are we on a boat? On land? Or on a horse or camel?…. who knows what will happen next!


Leave a comment

Horses, Boats, Writers, Travel, and Stories from the Heart

This is a short story on travels, boats and horses from a fellow writer and friend, Alison Alderton.

It’s very special.

To find out why you’ll have to read to the end…  Here’s Alison’s pretty barge ‘Lily’

Dutch barge Lily moored at Mustadfors

Dutch barge Lily moored at Mustadfors

What do horse shoe nails and boating have in common? by Alison Alderton

“Not a lot” I hear you reply. Well at first glance perhaps not but recently I drifted into the small town of Mustadfors on Sweden’s Dalsland Canal and made a discovery as well as a link to a friend.

The horse shoe symbol on the side of the lift bridge

The horse shoe symbol on the side of the lift bridge

On the lift-bridge by the town’s lock is a horse shoe symbol, it reflects the town’s long association with the production of horse shoe nails. In conversation with the Lock Keeper, he told how the company, which no longer works out of the town, once specialised in light weight nails. These were made from aluminium and used in the race horse industry. With a little research of my own I later discovered these are also used with shoes specially designed for trotting horses.

The entrance to the former horse shoe nail manufacturers

The entrance to the former horse shoe nail manufacturers

Mustadfors lift bridge

Mustadfors lift bridge

Mustadfors lock on the Dalslands Canal

Mustadfors lock on the Dalslands Canal

Horse-trotting has a long history in Sweden; people have competed with their horses since the 19th century and at the nearby Amal’s racetrack there are regular events from April through to September each year.

Home, 5 horses nearby and our tents

Home, 5 horses nearby and our tents

Friends
A boating friend, Jackie Parry recently published a book about her amazing adventures with five ex-trotting horses which she and her husband, Noel rescued from an unknown fate. “A Standard Journey” is an exciting read; about how they sold up and set off with their horses to hack Australia’s Bi-centennial National Trail and brings my visit to the pretty little canal-side town of Mustadfors full circle.

I am thankful for this most unusual discovery which triggered thoughts of a dear friend.

jackie p

And why is this so special?

Well, Alison’s publisher is keen for her to finish her book on her life with a rather special companion. Yes, there’s Roger, her lovely husband, but there’s also Buster the Beagle.

Boating with Buster – The life & times of a barge beagle will be a story you’ll want to read. Follow Alison here and/or here and try to be patient, it is a work in progress.

What I can promise you, knowing the ethos behind the story, is that it will be a book that will stay with you forever – I can hardly wait!

Here are more photos to whet your appetite.

And here’s our Dutch Barge (for sale) you can have a good look around here….

Rouge Corsair is for sale!

Rouge Corsair is for sale!


Leave a comment

A Standard Journey

I would like to introduce you to a beautiful story. Some of you may have already had the pleasure of discovering 
“A Standard Journey” 
by author Jackie Parry 
but for those of you who haven’t, here it is. 
Even if you have experienced this, maybe it’s been a while since you visited with 
5 horses, 2 people and 1 tent! 
Available in eBook & Paperback Format
About The Book
They rescued five horses from an unknown fate.They sold everything they had.

With daring inspiration, Jackie and Noel trained the lost and confused horses, and forced their own unfit bodies to meld into one team.Life became horses, trail, endurance, and camping: all seven reliant on one another as they trekked along part of Australia’s majestic Bicentennial National Trail.

What started as a dream adventure turned out to be more than they had ever imagined. The beauty of the trail didn’t lessen its dangers; with minimal support and all their worldly possessions on horseback, Jackie and Noel made mistakes and with humour learned the hard way.

They were amateur horse-handlers, tackling an epic challenge, but they created something special, unique, and incredibly endearing.

Fears were faced, healed, and conquered. Bonds were forged.

But did the team of seven that started together, finish together?

Saddle up and take a ride along life’s natural trail of trauma, fear, pain, and loyalty.


————————————-
The Standardbred is a horse breed best known for its ability in harness racing at a trot or pace.

———————————————

Read What People Are Saying About This Book
‘A story that will resonate with any animal lover, any adventurer, and anyone who enjoys reading about ordinary people achieving truly extraordinary things.’ 

‘A hauntingly beautiful book.’
‘A story that shows how two people continue to discover new strengths in each other through the most dire circumstances.’

‘The humour and humbleness makes this such an enjoyable read.’

‘She conveys her story with searing honesty.’

‘This will stick with readers for a long time.’

 
How About an excerpt from “A Standard Journey”?
We Won’t Even Have A Sink! 

Galloping down the mountain to find a gun to shoot one of our horses, I realised that I had bitten off more than I could chew.

My borrowed horse sensed my fear as we plunged down the trail. My mind focused on the gun, a necessity to terminate excruciating pain. There was a broken horse on the ridge. He had released a knowing groan as his fetlock snapped.

Plunge, jump, ford – I squeezed my aching legs around my brave mount. We both expelled urgent breaths from our flared nostrils. I had to find a gun!

Sweat and tears mingled, running clean streaks along my grubby face, my eyes stinging. My heart banged in my chest, while the horse’s heart thrummed beneath my calf muscles. Time slowed as if we hurtled through syrup.

I cursed Noel – it was his idea. Not to shoot the horse, but living with horses twenty-four seven while trekking along the Bicentennial National Trail (BNT). We had rescued five lost beasts that could have been destined for dog meat. Over many months of struggle, we had transformed the seven of us into a team.

 
Who Is Jackie Parry?

Currently Jackie is exploring the French canals on a Dutch barge with her Australian husband.

Originally she was from the UK, Jackie is now an adopted

Australian. She grew up with horses in the UK until her world was shattered with a heart-breaking bereavement. Disillusioned with life she ran away to Australia and met and married Noel. They decided to buy a boat and set sail. So within her first year living in a foreign land, she was getting used to a foreign husband, and a foreign life on board!

Mariah II took Jackie & Noel around the world. Pyewacket II (purchased in San Francisco) took them across the Pacific Ocean for a second time on a more southerly route. Adventures include The Great Loop in the USA plus Canada’s Great Lakes and the French Canals.

As a commercial skipper Jackie has worked internationally, and has been a Marine Rescue skipper. She has also taught commercial maritime. She co-wrote a pilot book (in America) and several hundred magazine articles worldwide. Cruisers’ AA (accumulated acumen) was Jackie (and Noel’s) first self-published book.

 
Jackie Parry is also a blogger, and she’s a natural!
You won’t be disappointed by what you find on either of these blogs. You may even get a chuckle or two!
Check out her blogs and follow her here:

At www.jackieparry.com &
At www.noelandjackiesjourneys.com

 
You can also find her on social media channels! 
Follow Jackie Parry

Twitter
Facebook
Pinterest
Linkedin
Amazon

 
Thank you for stopping by and visiting with us! We hope you enjoyed our What’s Inside Wednesday post with “A Standard Journey” 
by author Jackie Parry!
Please take a moment to leave us a comment, and please don’t pass this book up, you will love it!
Get Your Copy Here
 
 
Leave A Review For The Author, Just A Few Words Of Encouragement Are All It Takes!
Thank You Again!
Enjoy Your Night!
Margaret