Six Months in Wonderland
 
 
picture of the book
 
Six Months in Wonderland

Author: Gail Foster, Hobart Tasmania Australia

Publisher: Forty Degrees South Pty Ltd, Hobart

ISBN: 978-0-9808564-2-2  (Hardcover) 244pp.

Copyright: Gail Foster, 2011

 

"Six Months in Wonderland" is a true story. Wonderland is a beautiful area of rain forest under the shadow of Mt Wellington in Hobart, the capital city of Tasmania, Australia’s island state. A rustic, 3 story house, surrounded by tall eucalypt trees and bustling with native wildlife is the setting for a new beginning for Gail and her two teenage daughters.

Bats in the ceiling, leeches in the yard and a soap eating rat in the bathroom make lateral thinking and humour a survival necessity.

There is plenty of adventure in this book. Gail’s upbringing included peacocks regularly landing on the roof of the family home and experiencing the horrific 1967 bushfires. Gail experienced a number of "narrow misses" – she missed the Granville train disaster in Sydney by 24 hours, a change of plans prevented her family from being at Port Arthur on the day of the massacre, and a trip home saved her from death or injury from the boiler explosion at Mt St Canice.

Faith versus religion is a major theme in this book. Gail’s experiences in church life range from the humorous to the abusive. "Six Months in Wonderland" is a journey from fundamentalism to freedom.

Gail’s varied work history provide times of drama and humour. Dodging the knife throwing of a “delinquent girl”, working with the drugged, violent and mentally challenged and having a murderer in her violin class are just some highlights.

Teenage romance, love in a boarding school, first marriage, children, separation and divorce, finding love for the second time and a mid-life wedding illustrate strategies for finding and surviving love.

Useful tips from Gail’s life include; retrieving contact lenses from a drain, how a student nurse should not clean thermometers, increasing biceps while making bread, how to write a thesis while bringing up a baby, cosmetics from the kitchen and finding your dream man.

This is a Tasmanian book with universal themes. Wonderland is a place and also an attitude – an attitude of hope, love and humour.