Everyone has their own idea of home, and what home entails, for Trish Nicholson that idea came to the realisation on a sand dune in New Zealand, thus buying and setting up a new home there following a life of globe-trotting life as an aid worker.
In The Five Acre Forest, Trish Nicholson tells the story of not just the setting up of this new home, but how this once barren land on which she chose to build a house and surrounding forest amid an ever-changing New Zealand landscape.
The story of the land within New Zealand is tied to its very history and folklore, the tales of Māui who fished up the Northern Island with a magic fishhook and Te Houtaewa who outran all of his enemies along the length of Ninety Mile Beach, although it’s a little shorter at approximately 55 miles, however, with the beach being named by Captain James Cook, the name evidently stuck.
The extraordinary history and folklore of New Zealand are intertwined with the author’s narrative to create a natural haven within this magnificent landscape, and a book such as The Five Acre Forest can only exist from the passion involved in not just the writing of it but the passion and energy taken to create such a living project in the first place.
The Five Acre Forest is a testament to the strength, passion and courage of the author. Learning about native plants and creating a living space is by no means a small feat, and Trish Nicholson by no means makes it sound easy, however, the triumph of The Five Acre Forest, is not just the creation of the site, but how it has helped inspire others and how it can inspire us all to show that each one of us can create our own spaces, learn about the native land and show it the respect it deserves.
- The Five Acre Forest by Trish Nicholson is published by Troubador Books (£10.99). To order a copy go to www.troubador.co.uk
Founder and Editor of Pilgrim House, currently undertaking a research degree at Bangor University and working on a book on Folklore and early Welsh Christianity. Tom’s other work on music, poetry, health along other writings and images can be found at tomasstanger.com