I hope your Christmas and New Year festivities went well. As we head into February, it dawned on me that Christmas seems like months ago. I don’t know what you all think, but time seems to fly as we age. We may count time differently or fill our lives with lots of activities, I don’t know what it is, but December and January went by in a flash. People often ask how do you keep up as you’re always doing something. I don’t think about it, and I would probably think something was wrong if my calendar wasn’t overflowing. I love catching up with friends and family and, of course, travelling. This brings me to our next big adventure and the possibilities for a cosy murder mystery.
We are heading to Antarctica. This has been my husband’s dream and is finally coming to fruition. He’s a fantastic photographer and usually spends his time at the racetrack photographing racing cars. He also has an eye for capturing impossible images, so I know before we even get on the MS Fram expedition ship that he will be in photographer’s paradise as he captures nature through the lens.
Me, well, I love nature also, but my photography skill isn’t great. I’m what they call a happy snapper. I’m more than happy with the snaps I take with my phone, so I’ll leave the great shots for my husband. I’m pretty sure the pristine environment of Antarctica, the wonders of Patagonia and living on a ship with a group of like-minded adventurers for twenty-six days will get the creative juices flowing and keep me busy penning a new story.
While at the gym this morning, slogging away on the rowing machine—writers sit too long, so yours truly likes to work out three or four times a week to help keep the body fit—the big screen in front of me was showing an inspirational film on snowboarders and skiers. How do they perform some of those manoeuvres? Mind-boggling! Anyway, I transgress. We love snow. We live in a hot climate, so snow doesn’t happen here in Adelaide (South Australia) —which isn’t entirely true. On odd occasions, when the temperature plummets, we get a sprinkle at Mt Lofty (710m – 2,330ft), the highest point in Adelaide.
The snow rarely settles, though, but many Adelaideans’ may never see snow, so they travel to Mt Lofty to touch it. We get our snow fix on holiday. We’ve visited ski resorts in the Victorian snow fields where the season is short, and snow is hit or miss. We’ve skied in Austria and Canada. The best trip so far was Scandinavia in the winter. There was so much snow we were indeed in a winter wonderland. So you wonder why I’m waffling about skiing when I started talking about Antarctica? Snow, a glass of mulled wine, a notebook, and a story is born. The winter scenes on the video this morning have already got the creative juices flowing, and I can’t wait to see how our adventure trip tips me into story mode.
Needless to say, I’ll be giving a full report on Antarctica with pictures compliments of Peter Knights, photographer extraordinaire.
Until then, stay safe.
My hubby, Peter, and I were recently invited to a Royal Flying Doctor Service (RFDS) function to hear about some of their life-saving stories and view their operation at the Adelaide airport (South Australia). Having travelled extensively throughout the remote central Australian outback and meeting people whose lives would’ve been lost if not for the RFDS, we understand how vital their service is to remote communities.
Having flown over Australia many times and knowing how long it takes to cross, I was intrigued to find out the land mass, so I did a spot of research. Australia is 7.69 million square kilometres or about 3 million square miles, with a small population of 25 million. Two-thirds of us live around the regional coastlines, while the remaining live across rural and remote areas. These places sometimes have more than an eight-hour drive to the closest township, so access to health is a problem, and that’s where the RFDS steps in. They work to reduce the disparity in health service access by bringing emergency medical and primary health services to those areas that don’t have access. They make it possible for people to live, work and travel across our large country.
A non-profit organisation, they rely solely on fundraising. They’ve become one of our favourite charities because of the life-saving service offered and the dedicated people working under their banner.
If you’ve read my books: including, Destiny, book one in the West Series, Second Chance, in the Racing Series, and the El Alto series, you will get a feel for how isolated Outback Australia is. In the third book of the Racing series, Racing Fate, a plane crash in remote South Australia sees our hero Lachlan McDonald needing emergency help. The RFDS comes to the rescue and flies him to Adelaide, where he receives that help. The pilots have nerves of steel landing and taking off on remote dirt tracks. They’re true heroes who don’t seek accolades as they do a job they love.
Australia has a wealth of history to tap into when writing. I’ve used remote towns and based characters on some of the exciting people I’ve met on my travels. Wherever you live, if you write, search out these resources as they add authenticity to your stories. The RFDS is an organisation I have yet to tap into, but I’ll be doing just that in future books.
Happy New Year to everyone. I hope it brings health and happiness into your lives.
Until next time
Contemporary adventure with