What happens when you leave city life and move to five acres on a hunch, with a husband who’s an aspiring alpaca-whisperer, and a feral cockerel for company? Can you eat the cockerel for dinner? Or has it got rigor mortis?
In search of a good life and a slower pace, Fiona Stocker upped-sticks and moved to Tasmania, a land of promise, wilderness, and family homes of uncertain build quality. It was the lifestyle change that many dream of and most are too sensible to attempt.
Wife, mother and now reluctant alpaca owner, Fiona jumped in at the deep end. Gradually Tasmania got under her skin as she learned to stack wood, round up the kids with a retired lady sheepdog, and stand on a scorpion without getting stung.
This charming tale captures the tussles and euphoria of living on the land in a place of untrammelled beauty, raising your family where you want to and seeing your husband in a whole new light. Not just a memoir but an everywoman’s story, and a paean to a new, slower age.
About the Author
Fiona Stocker is an English writer living in Tasmania, Australia. After graduating in the arts, she worked in London and Brisbane in the fields of theatre, advertising, education and recruitment. A circuitous route, sense of adventure and aversion to proper paid employment took her to Tasmania in 2006, where she and her husband established a small farm, food and agri-tourism business, Langdale Farm. The couple raise Berkshire pigs and produce premium pork products sold at an award-winning farmers' market and providores across northern Tasmania. They host visitors in a converted studio at the farm for eco-luxe farm-stay accommodation, and generally try to live the dream. Besides partnering in the farm business, Fiona works as a writer and editor on books, e-books and online material and writes feature articles for lifestyle magazines. Her book A Place in the Stockyard, commissioned by Tasmanian Women in Agriculture, commemorating their history and featuring many personal stories of their members, was published in 2016. She is on the Board of the Tamar Valley Farmgate Festival, which launches in 2017, and the Tamar Valley Writers' Festival, both of which have funding from Events Tasmania. She was a judge of the Tasmanian Short Story Writers' Competition of 2017, with shortlisted entries compiled in an anthology to be launched at the Hobart Writers' Festival. Fiona Stocker blogs as Apple Island Wife, and you can find her social media under that name too.