As a child, I would curl up in a corner of the window seat, looking out onto our glorious African garden in the Highlands of Kenya – I was always a dreamer…
Beyond the fence of our twelve acre plot lay the Great Rift Valley. And Lake Nakuru – famous for the flamingos, which fringed its shores – nestled just out of sight behind a fold of hill.
I suppose I got food for dreaming from the books I read – I was a complete and utter bookworm.
As a child, my head was always in the clouds. I would dream myself to sleep, fantasising – building castles in the air – being swept off my feet by a handsome stranger. Sometimes I’d have a REAL dream, wake up, and if it were powerful, significant in any way, I would grab a pen and write it down while I remembered it.
But I also had constructive dreams, which can make a big difference in your life if you go about it the right way.
Twelve years ago, after living 55 years in Kenya, where I went to school, and brought up my family, I found myself in a place I did not want to be, due to circumstances beyond my control. Forgive me – here, in Eastbourne.
I didn’t know how we were going to survive – we could only afford to buy a tiny flat after living in a mansion on top of the world, enjoying the vast spaces of Africa around us. Then I was challenged to write a wish list. I was told that if I didn’t know where I wanted to go, I would never get there.
Was this person crazy?
But for want of anything better to do, I complied. And found the exercise astonishingly stimulating.
I wanted to travel – that was easy – I wanted to go to China, Russia, (thinking of shades of Dr. Zhivago, and War & Peace) – and when I got really old and doddery, I’d tackle Europe. I’m nearing that time now…
I dreamt of setting up a Granny travel fund for my seven grandkids – all in Australia. That was indeed building castles in the air. And do you know, five of them have already claimed from that fund, which has grown 100% even in these economic times. Here are two cool dudes overwhelming our flat as I speak.
I wanted to write a book, and have it published by a real publisher. Now that was far-fetched. But it had been my dream ever since I’d learned to read. I would write it my way – it would be full of romance, and tingly love scenes.
I devour books – novels, life stories, inspirational books, entertaining books, even educational ones. I feel bereft if I haven’t got a book in my hand. You can lose yourself in a fantasy world; you can forget your frightening surroundings.
And you can write – pour out your soul as a catharsis when you’re caught in a place you never wanted to be.
That’s what I did. I wallowed in nostalgia while I dug out old letters and diaries, and researched the history of Kenya…
Dreams DO come true – Two books have been published by Crooked Cat, and the third is racing to the end of its first draft!
My website: http://janebwye.com/