In July I began with my new book, Liberating Hearts; a continuation of Love at War: an inspirational drama that follows the lives of Harriet Davies and Phillip Burger. Worlds apart, these two characters have much in common. Each is in search of stability. The one finding their equilibrium the other a new path.
Halfway into the book, Phillip threw me a curveball and I had to get legal counsel about it. Which halted me for some time. Then, during the morning pages, I found the answer and will continue with the story soon.
Contact me if you too want to learn more about the Morning Pages.
With the pandemic that plagues us to this very day, we must find a place of balance. A place of safety in the midst of the unnatural way of living, turmoil and fears our lives have plunged into. It is my sincere hope that you have found that place and remain well-adjusted. If not please reach out to someone or reply back to me. Let’s connect and find your balance back. Your well fair is of the utmost importance to me.
I don’t know about you, but I have noticed that death lurks around every corner more than before. Maybe it has to do with the fact that we are confronted with statistics of COVID 19 on a daily basis. I try to avoid it but just opening my search engine reveals the news of the day which is bombarded by the news of this pandemic. If we don’t keep our eye on the ball, then the numbers can overshadow our goals and dreams very easily. I have chosen to stay focus on the path I have begun for 2020 and allow the process to teach me and energize me rather than looking at the negative of it all. I learn and study, I write and develop my craft, I read uplifting books, my mind occupied with positive vibes. My balance is intact. 52 days ago I have started with Morning pages where I write my thoughts (negative and positive) down, trusting the process of creativity to show itself through the longhand inscriptions. So many things are revealed that I am quite excited about this new journey. It has opened new thoughts, innovative ideas and gave me a sense of peace and focus which the outer world cannot touch. Being in closeness with my Creator has opened me to new possibilities and though the world is in shambles my steadfastness is secure. In these days of immersing myself into the Creator’s path, some elements have been highlighted
According to the Oxford dictionary creativity means:
The use of imagination or original ideas to create something, inventiveness.Tapping in I have realized that my inner well was blocked by many stones. Which stopped the flow of communication and confidence in a big way. The more I gave into the process, the more I came in touch with the creative underground river available to me.
Once we get in touch with it our creativity starts to blossom. It begins to flow with ease. As we tap in the freedom of flow it begins to break the boundaries and confinements and make space for this river to immerged from the depths. During this process, I have learned valuable lessons through the elements revealed to me.
The meaning of Elements
An essential or characteristic part of something abstract: a component part, section, and portion. Any of the four substances (earth, water, air, and fire) regarded as the fundamental constituents of the world in ancient and medieval philosophy. It is a part of an electric kettle, heater, or cooker which contains a wire through which an electric current is passed to provide heat. Once I found this place it became a two-way street. The more I receive, the more I started to give. This was followed by confirmation by my Creator. Everything working together to form a whole that propels me forward. Where it will lead, I don’t understand fully but the motion creates excitement within which helps me to stay on course.
The elements that I will be discussing are water – from the well to the river, our road’s destination, and the domino effect.
Each element plays a part in reaching our destiny. Taking the path of less resistance to break the barriers and touch those around us. The two walking in synchronicity as the journey continue.
When Benjamin Franklin discovered the established relationship between lightning and electricity, we all benefited from it. If he didn’t take the time to tap into the Creator, we would still be in the dark. But because he did and allowed the insight to flow and change into knowledge, we enjoy the benefits of his discovery. A two-way street principle.
This knowledge was always there. Flowing in the crevices and available for all. Not one of us is favoured above the rest. The knowledge is available for all who is willing to take the time to be in touch with the Creator as our source.
The more we connect the more God reveals himself. The secret is to remain there. To be steadfast and diligent. Allow the process to work as we connect and not stop at the first hurdle.
Philippians 3:14, KJ I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus. Remember to get the workbook, So, you want to be a writer? Think like a Life Coach, available on Amazon at the incredibly low price of $0.99c. Share it with your friends and give me some feedback.
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In my latest book, Liberating Hearts my main character is Harriet DeVaughn Davies, a charming Southern Belle who had to learn to stand on her feet after the death of both parents and a husband in jail. It is the follow up book of Love at War, with a spiritual message.
I am already 34 000 into the book and came to a stop when another character threw a curveball at me. Now I need some legal counsel… 😊
I had to do some research about these women and found actually many similarities with women here in South Africa. As I read, I realized my mum would have been the perfect Southern Belle and many of these values and mannerisms were instilled in me. Which I try to do… really…But I am far from being a Southern Belle. I am just to rough around the edges as my mum used to say. 😊
This is what I have learned from the many references I read:
41 Rules of A Southern Bell
You’ll either wish you were a Belle or wish you could marry one.
Pearls go with anything — ANYTHING I must say I agree with this, who doesn’t love a beautiful set of pearls…”😊
We can make sweet tea with our eyes closed, and our hands tied behind our backs. South African Belle’s likes to make ginger beer. We don’t understand the fascination with sweet tea.
NEVER leave the house without being put together. I agree.
Your company is more important than your iPhone. So, agree with this. Why bother to visit then?
When in doubt, monogram it. This is not a big thing in South Africa yet, but I like the idea.
Never start a meal without saying grace. Always be grateful. A South African tradition.
Smiling at strangers is a force of habit. Mmm, not always… 😊
Curls, curls, and more curls. I hate curlers, the only way I can get curls in this straight hair. So, a big no to me but mum would have agreed.
Every day is an excuse to dress up. Of course, even in bed you must look your best.
Speak slowly and in an educated manner. Here I will fall from the bus. My words are to slow for my thought process.
Respect and acknowledge the fact the Scarlett O’Hara was a bad b****. Oh yes…bad ass lady.
Always Rsvp. It is the right thing to do.
You can never go wrong with a firm handshake…And a smile. Absolutely, but in SA handshakes are recerved for men, which I don’t understand. I really do not want hugs from every person I meet. But a smile that I can do. I am normally the first to go for the handshake. It works for me.
Saturdays in the fall are reserved for college football. Since Rugby is our main sport I will watched only when a big match is on. And I don’t wear the jerseys.
Likewise, you plan your entire spring calendar around your favourite baseball team. No… not me as well.
It’s okay to be fashionably late. There is seldom a good excuse except for emergencies but be on time.
Mama raised us not to curse. Oh, mum failed with this one on me. I try to behave when among decent people but riled up… oh my…
Use your inside voice. Out loud?
Sit up straight. Absolutely
And cross your legs. A lady reveals nothing. Agree. My undergarments are my business.
Know when it’s appropriate to “Bite your tongue,” and when to give your opinion. Agree. My opinion is not needed.
Attendance for Sunday service is mandatory and goes without questioning. Long story short, I don’t attend church.
There’s always an excuse to entertain. A braai solves all problems.
Expect a gentleman to hold your door open for you and pull your chair out for you. Definitely. A man with manners, oh my…
Trust and respect your elders. Without question.
Getting out of a vehicle gracefully is a hidden talent. The first thing any woman should learn and practise.
Know your intelligence, but don’t flaunt it. No question about it. I have learned this the hard way.
‘Steel Magnolias’ is your southern belle “goals.” Loved this movie, I love the way they talk, how they address each other. Support each other.
Sip on your lemonade and mind your own business. Truth.
Slow cooking all day long. I don’t like cooking. Baking, but not cooking.
Take pride in your effortless ability to properly set a table. My mum was an expert in this. Me, put it inside a glass if there is not room, otherwise help yourself.I absolutely love a beautiful serviette with it.
Pastels are always in fashion. True that. But I like earthy tones more.
Back in 1992 my journey with this process had begun. Back then I have written down my path as a brand new believer. I noted new revelations and scriptures and matured as believer and leader.
When I became a groupleader with Word in Action (Woord in Aksie) many of my experiences were written down. When I was a vessel for miraculous breakthrough in others. Prophetic word I have received etc.
By 2000 my journaling had evolved to writing down my feelings, and experiences in my day to day struggles… battling with the why’s with no direction. By then we went through tough times in church and had to deal with many hurts which were scribbled down. Many tear marks stained these pages which became part of my journaling.
By 2010 my journaling had stopped. I was emotionally, physically and spiritually at a loss. By then we have lost everything. However, while my journaling had stopped, the stories began. It simply flowed from me unhindered and 12 books were written between 2010 – 2012.
By then we had no income, no car, and waited for the bank to take the house and had no electricity or food. When we could afford diesel for the generator I wrote these stories. My experiences became part of the characters struggles and I simply got lost between these pages. An escape goat from reality.
My first book, A Pirate’s Wife was published in 2012. I finally felt like someone who mattered when it went live. Back then it was only available in Kindle and free… since it has been published 20 000 copies were downloaded. (Not to shabby for a girl from Brakpan.) 😜
But journaling stayed in the background. From 2010 – 2018 I have not written at all. I did, however started to write motivational pieces, articles for magazines etc and poured my heart into this. In a sense this became my journaling. It was more refined and purposeful.
The end of 2019 I started with journaling again. This time it became more focused more concentrated as I embarked on my emotional healing. The scars and pains found an outlet and with my life coach and mentor I started to lift my head. Journaling became a sound board where I found myself.
When I started with the Morning pages 4 weeks ago, I had no idea that it would usher in another side of my creativity. A side that opened me while open heart surgery was done. The shame and guilt had made way for new beginnings and I experience breakthrough in my creativity.
Your creativity walks hand in hand with your emotions, growth and learning. It shows you the deeper meaning of you while you can express yourself effortlessly.
On the first of this month I started with a brand new book and it began with much hesitation. Yesterday, I finally found the breakthrough in myself, and write with ease. The same way I have written back in 2010. Now it comes with greater ease… purposeful while the essence of the story is revealed. And of course I apply all the lessons learned about the craft and what I have shared here.
Why did I write this? Glad you asked… 😊 Do not underestimate the power your journaling has. Within those pages are you free to express your heart, to allow your creativity to flow. No matter how your reality looks right now, stay true to the process of writing/ journaling. Allow healing to breakthrough and receive the clarity you desire.
Do you feel blocked… write. Do you feel down…. write. Do you feel inspired… write. Do you feel drained… write. No time… write. No money…write. No food…write. Sick…write.
Since I have written this piece in 2015 for a magazine some of my views have changed. But it is interesting to read my thoughts at the time. I have learned from this experience and cherish the life lessons.
Since I have written it, I am in a steady relationship which have changed some thoughts, but many of the views are still the same. I just find it in other ways.
The one thing I have done was to rectify my relationship with my Heavenly Father and embark on a new road of creativity. I allow the Creator to teach me and give in return to others that face hardships; in their own search to find themselves.
It is a freeing realization that sets my feet on firm ground. It gives me purpose while I continue to grow.
Here we go, hope you find it insightful.
Why is it that we settle so easily?
Why is it that we go for the expected—the normal, while we know that our hearts want more?
Why couldn’t we for once follow our heart and be the person we know is hiding within?
Why must we first go through all the difficulties, to reach the point that we are honest with ourselves and say we want more?
To stop trying to fit in, working hard at it just to find that everything we gained added nothing to our heart’s desire. That it can’t quench the first.
We waste so much time in competing that we get lost in the process, and finally feel lost, out of control—not sure who we are. Allowing people, the community, and believes to dictate to us how to live our lives.
Yet so many discover these truths early on, and are ridiculed, shun but yet seem happy, satisfied with their life’s choices. We admire them from afar and wish it could be us. Jealous of the life they lead but not willing to step out and take the risk of being different.
To be different means to stand out, to be the leader, and set the pace. It is the person who takes the risk and wins, apparently without difficulty. They are happy and content with who they are. Living life, enjoying, and experiencing life at a rate that we can only imagine. While we drudge along-unhappy, jealous, and unfulfilled in our ordinary mundane choices.
I have a hunger to reach that point as well, to be truly satisfied with my journey; taking the responsibility back into my own hands and stand at the steering wheel. To be the Marco Polo of my own destiny.
For too long I have harbored the idea that my life was perfect—while crying at night; displeased, dissatisfied and feeling utterly out of control. I saw my life unfolding before me, following the same pattern—day after day, month after month, year after year. With no meaning.
Aimlessly I trotted around, while I slowly died inwardly. Tears would stain my pillow many nights, especially, when my dreams were scattered each time due to circumstances that played havoc in our lives; ripped from me without reason. I became a mere shell from the woman I knew I could be.
I buried it deep within, there where no one could see—or give me ill-fitted advice, and no one could judge. You see, people want too to seize you in that captivity, because then you fit into the mold of their beliefs and ideas. Smoldering the real you in the process without any care of the core inside. They want to silence you so that you wouldn’t make any ripples in their world and stay in the bowl of conformity just like them.
Too be an original takes backbone, it is a spirit they cannot manage because that same fortitude will challenge them, and it would become a requirement to make their own choices. It is easier to keep you in the same bowl, not making big moves and stay in the rat race we all are living in—calling it life. But we are living a delusional life.
I wrestled about this; I thought that I was rebellious in my thinking, laying it down before the All-knowing Father in absolute humbleness; just to walk away still feeling restless, and unfulfilled. Not sure what to do, not sure how to put what I felt into words. Becoming numb in my existence—just going through life in autopilot. And, slowly life drained out of me. I became weak, fearful, terrified of the unknown and yes rebellious; a quiet rebellion where I withdrew from everything and everyone around me. In the spiritual sphere, we walked in, rebellion wasn’t tolerated. Only utter obedience. I heard it everywhere I went.
Do not be conformed to this world with its wants and needs.
Lay it down.
Don’t look back.
And many of these words I repeated to myself. I even chastised myself of being out of line, finding peace for a while. But only a while. It would never last, that burning desire to be satisfied would return once again—knowing there are more to life than this—it didn’t want to be quenched.
In my journey of self discovery I came to only one conclusion.
On this road I knew there was only one outcome. Not to be different or be uncaring for everyone else’s feelings, but to be true to me. You see, at my age changing direction means to rattle the cage, to move away from the comfortable and become uncomfortable. To face not only my own strength and weakness but to face the family, which were used to this pattern for so long that they themselves had no idea what I was struggling with. They knew that I was unhappy—would ask me many times what’s the matter, but I always denied it. Firmly closed, not admitting anything and they would continue to think that ‘she is strong.’ I was always the one that had an answer for anyone else, ready to listen but yet could never find someone to reveal my heart with; not trusting anyone to give sound advice. As a seeker of truth I was very adamant in this. When someone would come to me with a problem, I would be truthful, first listening attentively to what the person verbalizes and what is he/she not saying. Reading between the lines and without judgment would give sound advice.
A person that listen to give advice must be sure they don’t react out of knowledge but truly from the solution they look for in that particular situation. Otherwise, you give from your lack of advice and blocks a person. You become that obstacle for that person. As the listened you have to meditate on it before you could give advice; it was just the right way to do it.
I expected that from the person who would listen to me as well. Not to judge me or quote a few scriptures or nice quotes, because the Lord has spoken (in an ominous voice), before I even open my mouth, but to really listen.
Too many people judge, and give advice without hearing, or listening to the heart. They aren’t taking the time to really seek the answer, instead would answer from their point of view. They let me to believe that my feelings weren’t important enough, as if my feelings or desires have no value.
Because of this, I struggled to open up to people—still do. It didn’t matter who they were; friends or leaders—people I looked up to and respected at the time, or counsellors, they did not hear me—the person crying out for understanding.
I became closed-off, sending out a standoffish vibe, and became a recluse in my own thoughts, feeling helpless at times, and incredibly alone. There is nothing I could say to truly make you understand where I was as a person unless you have walked this road. I became so despondent that people started to talk down to me, humiliated me and made me feel worthless. Everything I touched or did was frowned upon and in turn I withdrew increasingly into my recluse state.
This forced me to look for other means of connecting, of just being me and being accepted for that. I found an outlet on the Internet. I discovered places where I could indulge in open conversation without judgment and had learned in the process that there are many more people looking for the same answer. Searching for the thrill of the moment, trying to bring back the energy and life that makes us human. To feel the blood rushing through our veins, telling us that we are alive. They we have purpose, that our way of thinking matter and that we aren’t freaks of nature, but enthusiastic people with a pulse. Desperate in our attempts to uncover ways of connecting with fellow human beings, even if it meant we must hide our true identity. (This is what the world does; it strips us of being true to ourselves, forcing us into the shadows.) So many people are living in unfulfilled relationships, their life partners not understanding the necessity to explore and be satisfied. Even society with all its rules doesn’t understand, instead it forces many to conceal their inner worth. Making us defenseless, taking away our resolve, forcing us in this robotic life that can be controlled by everything external; while the internal suffers and dies.
Each of us is an island amidst many other islands; keeping ourselves closed off for no one to intrude. Not even those who are the closest to us. We aren’t willing to allow entrance in this fortress we have erected: to preserve and protect ourselves from the constant onslaught of self denial. Instead we must hide from view, and live behind a veil of deception, creating a world where we are allowed to be normal. Yes, it did move me away from the confinements and restrictions, not in the way I was comfortable with, but it was the one place I could relax. It opened a world where I could discover my own desires and enjoy it without the guilt of being unsatisfied.
I had a long struggle within, not sure how to achieve these changes, trying to accept my life as it is. Trying to go with the customary ways but it simply didn’t work for me anymore. I was a Christian, wife, mother, grandmother, housewife, business owner, sister, aunt, daughter, and friend.
And then there was me, where did I fit in this scenario?
Why didn’t these titles make me happy?
I mean, it defined my position in society; it gave me a place of belonging, but yet…
We have so many titles that define us as a person, and many of us relish in these titles because it gives us a certain amount of authority. Hard-earned titles—I may add—can do that: it gives you the authority to speak, to teach and to direct or manage. And with this, I don’t talk about people that buy a title. That’s cheap hand me downs and doesn’t give you the respect you crave. Not by a long shot. A title earned through hard work: putting in the time is what elevate you from the rest.
Our connections to family, people, groups, and country classify us in many ways. It tells us where we belong or fit in the big scope of things. However, titles don’t really label us as a person. My struggle was: When you strip that away, what stays behind?
Who are you really?
The thing about illusions is that they carry no substance. And if something has no substance there is no foundation to stand on. It becomes unstable: it is then that you search the options, allowing your fantasies to take control—for me: I found an outlet in my writing and the Internet. I looked around me and saw people living their lives, having fun while I sat on the outside looking in. Never part of it, always a spectator. I was tired of being a spectator, I was tired of shielding myself so much that I haven’t had the faintest idea what would make me happy. Tired for not allowing myself to let go, dropping the mask and enjoying what I like; without the constant fear that someone will take it away, or tell me it was wrong, always feeling guilty for being me.
I weighed the benefits and consequences against each other, making a list of why I should stay in my marriage and remain on this path that led nowhere or change the direction to satisfy this hunger. The cons side of the list grew longer each time, tilting the scales to the one side; giving me a reason to continue the search in my pursuit to find me.
It took me three years to really grow some backbone. Three years of tossing and turning each night, not sure if I would be strong enough to do this. Of not sleeping, being miserable, frustrated, and sick. Yes sick, my health deteriorated: I was in bed often.
I knew that I had to decide, that I couldn’t go on like I did. I was kidding myself that I will feel peace if I pray more, meditate more, or do whatever needed to be done to overcome this. To change my mind or go ahead with the life I knew. However, my body was telling me to choose.
You need to know that there are consequences to this choice. It will come with some backlash. My life is a testimony to that.
Before I continue, I need to point this out: everyone’s transformation will be different. There are no similarities in following this path. You have to believe that what you do is for the correct reasons because you will be on your own. Few will understand you. You will find no sympathy or a willing ear to listen. No one will give you the time of day or support you. Beware: when you decide to make a sharp left everything in your life will tilt. You will think that you have made the wrong turn; that life continues to turn its cheek to you. Doubt will set in. it will give you the middle finger and points out that you had made one of the biggest mistakes in your life.
But I want to tell you: Hang on!
There is only one that would stand by you and give you the comfort you seek.
Only one. You.
Since I have made the move I sleep better, my health has increased and, best of all, I don’t feel guilty. Yep, you have read correctly. No guilt. Now you may ask: what did I do to alter my direction to find myself?
I walked away from a thirty-year marriage.
I was slowly suffocating within the boundaries that the marriage gave me. All the comfort made me feel caged in—when I say comfort, I’m not talking about financial comfort: there was none, to begin with. And I don’t say this in disrespect to my husband. Life threw us a few curve balls and it left us stripped from any earthly possessions. Other than the children, we have nothing to show for those thirty years. When I left, I made it clear it wasn’t about him, or what he did or didn’t do. We both had a part to play—so no rocks please—but I made it clear that I had to find me! That I had to prove to myself that there is more to life than what I know up to that point. I had to know if it was possible to stand, be independent and follow my heart all in the same breath. I had to take back the control that everyone else had over me.
What were my consequences?
From the day that I started to make a list, it included where I would begin on this quest. With nothing.
I moved in with my parents, the only place I could ‘afford’. I had no financial support from my ex. My mobility was strained in so much that I would stay at home for prolonged periods of time. Of course, I didn’t mind, because as a writer most of my time is spent in front of a computer typing away anyway. I’m alone and comfortable with my own company. Not a day goes by that I regret doing this; of finding my own feet and be my own person. I have many difficulties to face, the biggest one: financial lack. But yet I am happier than before.
When I walked away, I left all the earthly belongings behind. Accept for my clothes and computer that I brought with me I have nothing else to show. Do I miss it? Nope.
The other important thing and I think at this stage the most difficult hurdle to overcome is to find work. I am practical enough to know I cannot live from my parents indefinitely. I need to find work. In creating my own independence I need an income. In the months since I am back in my old room, I had uploaded my CV to many sites, seeking the one place that would give me the stepping stone to move forward in this expedition. Now and then an agent would phone just to never hear from them again. In that, my prospects are very dim. However, there is no time feeling sorry for myself. No time for allowing me to think that I have made a mistake. Just no time or the luxury to sit and weep, it is a question of drowning or swim. I have chosen to swim.
I decided to take responsibility for me, to take control and claim my independence back in my life, and in the process, I have learned that I am stronger than I gave myself credit for. That I can be effective, just here at my desk doing what I love.
Being a Blogger. To Write. To Read.
But most of all: To support, and to feel worthy.
No goal is out of reach.
When people start to tell you, you are bold and strong, and that you inspire them you realize just how far you have come as a woman in a few short months. You now realize that whatever life throws your way you can oversee with the dignity you have obtained over the years. That the wisdom you have learned doesn’t vanish but that it has a role to play in your life. It simply gives you the fuel to move forward in finding the person you have lived with all your life.
When we think of a pirate king, many of us picture Johnny Depp’s Jack Sparrow, a lovable rogue who looks like the love child of Keith Richard and Pepe le Pew.
But the man widely regarded as the King of the Pirates is someone you may never have heard of; one Henry Avery, who pulled off perhaps the biggest heist in history and became the subject of the world’s first global manhunt.
He almost saved India from the British. Almost.
I saw this article on Colin Falconer website and thought it a great story to share on my website. My very first book was A Pirate’s Wife and is available in Paperback at Group 7, and Kindle at Kobo, Smashwords, OBooko, and Amazon. I always had a keen interest for anything about pirates.
Avery may have been a rogue, but he wasn’t a lovable one. Discharged from the Royal Navy in 1690, he was involved in the Atlantic slave trade for some years. He later joined a Spanish privateer, the Charles II. Unhappy with the poor pickings, he led the crew in mutiny. He gave the ship a fancy name – he called her The Fancy – and he and his crew plundered their way along the coast of Africa towards the Red Sea.
That wasn’t enough. Avery had his eyes set on the biggest prize of all; the Indian Mughal’s flagship, the Ganj-i-Sawai. Joining forces with several other pirate ships, captained by the American buccaneer, Thomas Tew, they tracked her down off the port of Surat on September 7, 1695.
The Ganj-i-Sawai was the biggest ship in all India, boasting several dozen cannons and 400 riflemen – more than the entire pirate fleet combined. But by sheer luck, one of Avery’s first volleys cut down the Ganj-i-Sawai’s mainmast. Minutes later, the Indian crew panicked when one of their own cannons exploded.
Avery’s men were able to board her, and the Indian crew were subdued when the captain took refuge below deck and ordered a group of slave girls to fight in his place.
When the pirates took control of the ship, they found a treasure hoard beyond their wildest imagination. The gold, silver and jewels they found in the hold was worth tens of millions of dollars today and was the richest haul in the history of piracy.
But then it gets ugly.
Muhammed Khafi Khan, a contemporary historian in Surat, wrote in The History of India, that the pirates spent the next few days torturing and killing the surviving crew, and the female passengers – including an elderly relative of the Grand Mughal – were repeatedly raped. Several Muslim women threw themselves into the sea to avoid further degradation. Khan’s accounts were later corroborated by the confessions of Avery’s crew.
There was not much honour among the thieves themselves either. Avery and the men of the Fancy didn’t fancy sharing this haul with Tew’s men, so they loaded their hold with the loot, and arranged to meet and divide it later. Instead they headed for the lawless Caribbean. The other privateers could not catch Avery’s ship when she was under full sail.
Upon arriving at New Providence, Avery bribed the governor, Nicholas Trott, buying protection for him and his men, handing over their ship and a fortune in ivory tusks.
Back in India, there was a storm brewing.
The Mughal emperor, Aurangzeb was apoplectic with rage. He was not inclined to differentiate between British pirates and the British East India Company, and held them to account. He closed down the Company’s factories in India and threatened to attack Bombay and expel the English from the subcontinent. The Company fortunes were entirely dependent on trade with the Mughals. Something had to be done.
The Company promised to compensate for the loss of Aurangzeb’s treasure fleet and bring Avery to account. His capture became a matter of critical national importance.
Soon East India Company and Royal Navy vessels were scouring the seas in search of the Fancy, and a huge bounty was placed on Avery’s head. Trott warned the pirates in time, and Avery and almost his entire 113-man crew got away safely. Only 12 were captured.
The rest went to Charleston, some to Ireland and England, and some remained in the Caribbean. Avery himself vanished from history at this point, which only added to his mystique.
His legend grew as the manhunt continued: there were rumours he had established a pirate kingdom in Madagascar with the Moghuls’ granddaughter as his queen. Another story said that he had returned home to a happy retirement in Bristol, only to be bilked out of his money by local scammers. This happened, believe it or not, even in the days before the internet. Some said that he died penniless in a gutter.
Whatever the truth was, tales about him inspired the so-called Golden Age of Piracy, as thousands of impoverished and downtrodden European seamen tried to follow his example and sail the Atlantic in search of loot.
As for Aurangzeb, he did not follow through on his threat to expel the British, or else history might have been rather different. India might perhaps have been spared colonial rule.
Facing exclusion from the Indian subcontinent, the East India Company proposed to the Mughals that they provide protection for the Emperor’s ships. This clever move eventually gave the Company control of the Empire’s seaboard.
Perhaps the greatest irony in the story lies with the British government hanging a handful of pirates for stealing the Mughal’s gold while giving the East India Company leave to steal an entire country.
Colin Falconer found this story while researching the background for East India. It was based on another infamous act of mutiny and piracy, this one from the annals of the Dutch East India company, and also involved a fortune in Mughal treasure. It ended in one of the greatest – and most notorious – survival stories in history.
I have written this piece in 2016. Looking back, I have come a long way in the four years and my perceptions have changed from then to now. In a span of four years, and much needed growth my point of view is similar but with a touch of grown-up into it. Like when you add Cumin to a pot of soup. It enhances the flavour and you wonder why you have missed it all these years.
Back then I had to get my balance back and get settled. 2016 was a rough year. Not only was my heart broken but I lost my car in a scam and it became a battle of two years before the culprit was arrested and jailed. And I am still without my car. But I accepted that as part of my learning and to right my balance again.
Here is what I have written in 2016…
“The last couple of months were the most exciting time I had in a very long time, although silent in the sense that I didn’t write anything my life had undergone interesting twists; each opportunity a learning curve where I discovered so much of myself.
As a single woman, I realised my vulnerability; for a long time, I lived in a very safe cocoon allowing my husband to think for me. But since the bold step to stand on my own, taking responsibility for myself, I realised that my understanding of life was shaped by my circumstances, and the people or culture I lived in. In short, I wasn’t street smart.
In those days, I perceived people in black and white with little or no grace towards them. Now those unyielding glasses had fallen away, and my awareness of life became more colourful; making room not only for my own mistakes but those I’ve met. Because of this life isn’t rigid or set in stone any longer. It has become a kaleidoscope of laughter and passion, where I discover new opportunities at every corner. Venturing into the unknown to find incredible prospects and beautiful things along the way. At times I’m amazed at my own boldness as I walked into places I would not have dreamed to do previously and making friends. My pioneer spirit revelling in the new person emerging from the cocoon.
I’ve learned to trust my gut; I made mistakes when I disobeyed that little voice who diligently watch over me. While doing this I learned to have fun, laughing more than I did in a long time. I learned that it’s okay to mess up—no longer do I chastise myself in doing so—and at times eat some humble pie but all of that taught me valuable skills to use in my daily life and work environment. I work with people every day and at times I experience the good, the bad and the ugly all in a span of one week. We have different perceptions but when finely tuned in—making the effort—the ugly turns out beautiful, the bad good and the good sometimes bad. Life is a fine balance between them all.
My love life had its own challenges, but I found it easier to compromise with the challenges which would have driven me up the wall prior to my own experiences. Again, it had to do with those colourful glasses that replaced the strictness I had which had given me a better understanding of the situation…. or maybe it is the streaks of grey dusting my hair… But life prepared me.
In the past, patience wasn’t my biggest attribute and I was very demanding when I felt I didn’t receive my due. I’d learned to stand back, access and wait. Slow to anger became another characteristic that had emerged from it all when I had to deal with the challenges it presented.
In my last relationship, although similar in our thought process there were things we saw differently and of course each of us were in different stages of life (when going through a divorce you need to find your balance on your own) it threw curveballs into a very young relationship and we had to accommodate each other or it would drive us apart: which it did. The pressure of life didn’t give us the opportunity to make it work.
When two people meet, two worlds have to find a way to come together effortlessly (in my mind in any case). Now I need to adjust myself and find meaning and what I really want from life. Incorporating another human being into it without forgetting who I am.
For now, coming together and being part of someone’s life has taken a back seat to life. Because of this, uncertainty has become something I have to face often making life and any futuristic plans a confusing display of emotions and thoughts not sure what the next day would bring; it’s then that I’m forced to step back, reflect re-evaluate before I would say or do something that ultimately could destroy me.
In a second relationship more work goes into it. Gone are the rosy outlook of a new relationship. You experienced heartbreak, you had kids, you went through the ebbs and flows of life. Today you know it is not all confetti, champagne, and roses.
Today I understand it better. Maybe I knew it but back in my mind but cost me the pain of a failed relationship to truly grasp it. From the beginning we would face certain obstacles – long distance, insecurities, and crucial life decisions were just some of it. Maybe I should have walked away sooner (before my heart became attached). I stayed because I have invested so much of myself in the relationship. And I genuinely loved him. At that time, to walk away would leave me lonely and empty which I was not willing to face. When the inevitable happened, I was off balanced.
The outcome caused more blunders on the way, blunders that cost me emotionally and financially. I can blame no one but myself and I had to own up to them. The emptiness it left unsettled me and I honestly believed I would never found love or that I don’t deserve it.
This unbalance left me with crushing results. During this new journey I got to know myself and appreciate the intensity of those feelings but also to let go. Personally, I feel love and passion is overrated and if you are not willing to adapt you will lose your authenticity and genuineness. People will use you as an easy target, the reason I lost my car. I will not sell myself short just to be accepted ever again. Not everyone appreciates it.”
Since I have written this piece, I have learned to turn back to my Heavenly Father. And my past experiences had become another learning curve. Changing my perceptions once more. I study and write and allow the process to work and not rebel against the circumstances but embrace it. This gives me the confidence to reach out to other women in need.
With all this said I simply want to leave you with the thought: Don’t be afraid to live, to dream, to love and yes even to make mistakes.
To be true to ourselves takes determination and courage and at times you would be lonely not sure about the choices or even the next step but looking at the bigger picture we learn to know our own strengths discovering a world that would accept us for who we are.
But mostly to accept ourselves.
Be true to you.
Both my books are Free on Smashwords till 31st Of July… I would apprecaite your support. Reviewes on Goodreads and Amazon would be much help.
When I searched the internet for a book that can help me on my creative path, I saw this book. On YouTube I discovered all the review clips and the amazing feedback and I wonder why it is that I only learn about it now. But God must know why… so, I am okay with it. 😜🌟 So, here I am doing the 12-week course, #writing my #morningpages diligently to fill that place I still feel is empty. And to help me as a creative coach.
The position of the artist is humble. He is essentially a channel.
Violence has become the new order. It seems, dissatisfaction gives us the right to destroy, consequences be damned.
The brutal death of women is unacceptable.
As I prepare this post, I am bombarded with many thoughts, ideas, and information that compels me to make conscious decisions to concentrate on the matters at hand.
The news plays a big part in this, specifically when I see the ongoing disorder across the globe. Peace is evasive and reports keep coming in of spousal abuse, neglect, and overall dissatisfaction. Just in last week, four women were killed in South Africa alone. A hospital burned to the ground and schools were vandalized. Farm murders continued while the world watch.
“Violence against women takes many forms – physical, sexual, economic, psychological, emotional – but they all represent a violation of human rights and dignity with lasting effects and consequences both for women themselves and for the communities they live in.”
Therefore, Love at War’s story is important to tell. To be honest, I find the timeline of the competition tedious because I want it released now. But I also know there is a reason for its delay. However, it does not stop me to speak up, right.
The plotline touches the lives of six women: Sonia Main, the main character, Anne Stalin, Harriet Davies, Jillian McGee and two minor characters: Charlie and a murdered victim who features throughout the story as they face many choices because of the abuse.
Each had experienced sexual, emotional, economic, and physical abuse to some extent. Without giving to many spoilers away, each story will touch the heart, I believe. Set against the never-ending chaos in Iraq and South Sudan their actions and beliefs will help them to stand in faith or turn their back towards it.
This is also the reason I am in preparation with the follow up of the book which will continue where I have stopped in Love at War. This time the main character, Harriet Davies’s life will feature while Sonia will be more in the background. Her story has still much needed lessons to show.
Because the story is in the present time the lockdown will play a part within this story. Since Harriet is an American Southern Belle, I will need some help from my American readers. She comes from old money and lives in San Diego, and married to a womanizer. And until now very close lip about her husband’s indiscretions. However, because of the turn of events in Love in War her part becomes vital and the reason book two must be written.
Alongside her, Philip Burger’s story is just as important. As the spiritual anchor in L@W, his story is also important. Wisdom comes from experience and his experience is thrilling to say the least.
So, I have committed to the Camp NaNoWriMo July challenge to finish this book.
Who will join with me?
In essence… the abuse against women will stay with us until we all speak up. Either in truth or fiction women’s lives matters. As the creator of life, God has given her a unique ability that no man can copy. Creating life: not only in her body but also in her actions. She loves unconditional, with a tear and tongue and sometimes with a hand on the bum. Through it she creates love, faith, obedience and understanding and cultivate a being ready to face the world.
“A woman with a book
and a pen
has the power
to move nations.
A woman with a mind
and a voice
has the power
to change worlds.”
With that said, if you have not yet read the interview with Sonia Main, just click on the link. Do leave a comment or like. It helps with visibility and I will know you have stopped by.
You can also read the first 3000 words of Love at War here and vote for the story by choosing the stars on top of the page.
Remember to get the workbook, So, you want to be a writer? Think like a Life Coach, available on Amazon at the very low cost of $0.99c. Share it with your friends and give me some feedback.
Receive a Writer’s Journal for Beginners. To join my Wordplay Writer’s Community Click Here Do you require a Creative or Life Coach? Do you feel stuck in your current situation? Are you looking for someone that will hold you accountable to your life goals? Let us connect firstname.lastname@example.org