Love For A Thousand Years…Friday Fictioneers.

Being detained for importing acorns into Australia, Ciara had simply snaffled a few back from the family churchyard in Cloyne. She didn’t know how old that gnarled and crooked oak tree was, but had no doubt that her grandmother’s great grandmother would’ve climbed it as a little girl. After all, an oak could live for a thousand years. Now, Ciara planned to grow her own and watch her children, grandchildren and great grandchildren climb its branches and feel her arms wrap around them, even  centuries after she’d passed. They would know and feel her love…a love stronger than time.


This has been another contribution to Friday Fictioneers hosted by Rochelle Wishoff-Fields. This week’s photo prompt is © Sandra Crook. Thanks Sandra for sharing this image of a very striking tree.

Perhaps, many of you are unaware that Australia has  very tight quarantine restrictions, which are strongly reinforced. Indeed, perhaps you might’ve heard of how Johnny Deep and his girlfriend brought their dogs illegally into Australia, which potentially could’ve introduced rabies with catastrophic consequences.

Many years ago, my grandmother brough heather back from Scotland in her luggage and planted it when she arrived home. She was her own woman right to the  very end and I guess so many of us feel that something small and seemingly insignificant couldn’t possibly cause an environmental disaster. Yet, it can.

I am in the process of tracing the journey of my 4th Great Grandmother through the Irish Famine and out to Australia. She was born in Midleton, County Cork and lived in Cloyne nearby as well, which has the most imaginative round tower and churchyard, which inspired my take.

BTW I have become a foster carer for an animal rescue group and we are currently fostering 5 week old kelpie pups, who are still largely bottle fed. Alot of fun but time consuming.

xx Rowena

25 thoughts on “Love For A Thousand Years…Friday Fictioneers.

  1. michael1148humphris

    I have grown several young oak trees from acorns, and hope that they survive after me. Loved your tale, not least as some of my relatives left Ireland due to the famine

  2. JS Brand

    A lovely, heartwarming tale Rowena. Australia is right to put so much emphasis on protecting its flora and fauna. Gardens in the UK are much more beautiful than they would have been with access only to native plants, thanks to the efforts of determined plant hunters, but we’re also paying the cost of some of the mistakes they made by (legally) importing such plants as rhododendrons and Himalayan balsam, which are invasive and thuggish.

  3. Rowena Post author

    Thanks JS. I was interested to hear that the rhododendron has gone rogue in the UK. They’re quite rare here, difficult to grow and highly prized. My parents have a few in their garden. I thought you might enjoy reading about the garden at Port Arthur in Tasmania. It was a harsh penal settlement but it has an amazing garden with exotic species and the seeds were gathered from passing ships and keen collectors. The story fascinated me:
    Hope you have a great week! Best wishes,

  4. JS Brand

    Thank you Rowena. I’ll read that with interest. Given your roots (not a deliberate pun) you might be interested to know that a lot of work is being done on the Scottish mainland and islands (eg Colonsay) to get rid of or control the rhododendron. A shame because they are beautiful, but aggressive.

  5. bbryanthomas

    Your love of trees shows. I also go back across the years when ever I see an old tree, especially an oak.

  6. Rowena Post author

    Hi Kat,
    Been expecting a message along these lines from you. My husband and I have had a weird virus and while he’s back at work, I’m still sleeping a lot. I also have 5 dogs in the house now and as cute as the tiny “micro pups” might be, the puddles and piles do add up. Our two are now 3 months old and love chasing each other round everywhere. Still need one more shot before they can go out. Seems like they’ll be fully grown by then. I have also been head down trying to do this research project looking at 25 Irish Orphan Girls from the Midleton Workhouse who came out to Australia on the John Knox in 1850. I’ve mentioned this before and how my 4th Great grandmother was one of these girls, hence my interest. I have been looking at the whole thing of them being in the same boat and what happens to them once they get here, the twists and turns of fate and just trying to keep track of quite a few of them and see who they married etc has been very difficult. Some people don’t want to be found, although I have wondered whether a few might have been knocked off. I’ve been writing for Friday Fictioneers for too long. They love murders and myseries in that group. How are things with you? I hope they’re going well. Any plans for Christmas? It’s my husband’s birthday coming up and dance concert season. I’ll get to Christmas… BTW my daughter is doing her first dance solo in a few weeks time when her dance school performs at a local nursing home. I can’t wait. I think I’m going to burst with excitement, pride and no doubt disbelief. She did a duet at the local choral festival recently and I was spellbound. She’s come such a long way, even just in the last 12 months. Of course, I mostly see all the behind the scenes things and it’s a rare and special moment when I actually get to enjoy the end product.
    Take care and lots of love, Ro

  7. New Journey

    Glad to hear from you, yes I was worried about you!!! Your a better dog lover than I am, 5 dogs and 3 of them puppies, to much for me…LOL they are cuties for sure…what a sleuth you are, the excitement to put the pieces together of lives past, and especially family…to think you wouldn’t be here if not for your great, great, great grandmother and to see where her footprints took her….I am so proud of your little girl, well she’s actually a young woman, growing up way to fast, but her talent is wonderful. you did well mom, very well. Neither of my kids were into the after school activites, however now my son loves to swing dance…he even teaches classes at the dance hall where he is every Friday night. I have snuck in to watch him from a dark corner when he was younger. It looks like a lot of fun. Christmas will be spent at my daughters house and cat sitting. I have had this on the books for the last 2 years. They are going to England to spend Christmas in a drafty ole Castle…LOL that’s the way I like to think of it since I will be here and them there…LOL they are taking 3 weeks and enjoying London and Oxford in the winter !! I am actually looking forward to being there, get to see my friends that last there hoes and do something nice for them. My son will be in New Mexico for Christmas with his new gal and her family, and then on the 28th off for his 3 week vacation, Malaysia to spend some time with friends and then off to Australia to meet his new gal friend there to go camping up north, not sure where, then he will pop over to Singapore to see some more dancing friends before returning home. That’s what’s going on for me, my husband will stay here in the sunny desert and take care of this house while I am gone ! He has no desire to be in the wet winter weather…I want him to stay as healthy as possible. We will Skype lots – lol
    Glad to hear from you my friend…stay healthy, rest and give the pups a tug of the ear for me….lots of love and hugs….xxxkat

  8. Rowena Post author

    Thank you very much and profuse apologies for not replying earlier. Comments seemed to by-pass the main spot and only went into the list on the nav bar.
    Best wishes,

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