I’ve had a fairly adventurous life, living through the Blitz- time in England – I watched and remember the Battle of Britain as a two-year old – had a stint in post-war Germany with my army family, living at Belsen, living in the Beast of Belsen’s old apartment, travelled to school in Malaya in an armoured convoy through bandit-infested jungle, and later found myself trapped in the middle of the first Red Guard march in Hong Kong during the Cultural Revolution in China.In New Zealand, I once awoke to find a grey-suited man with a stocking over his head in our bedroom during my husband Pat Booth’s fight to free an innocent man wrongly jailed for a double murder (he was pardoned at the end of the eight-year battle). Then there was the time I found the wheels of my car had been tampered with to cause an accident when the Mr Asia drug ring – a world-wide drug ring my crusading journalist husband had exposed – had put a price on his head.I grew up in an army family, joining the British army myself. Living in Hong Kong with my army husband, I had to learn journalism on the run when the marriage broke up in order to support my two children. Eventually I came to New Zealand with the children aged five and six, knowing no-one, with no money, no job and no home, to start from scratch in a new country. We arrived with three suitcases, in two of which I’d packed sheets and cutlery to start a new home!
I was Woman’s Editor of the South China Morning Post before leaving Hong Kong, In New Zealand I became a writer at the liberal paper the Auckland Star, where I wrote a column for twelve years, became Woman’s Editor, and at the same time wrote a column for families and children in the New Zealand Woman’s Weekly for fourteen years. I stopped writing for magazines last year after fifty years of journalism, and have also written a number of books..
Now retired, I still write my blog, am writing several more books, and live in the middle of a protected forest miles from anywhere with my new partner.
Hobbies are gardening, grandchildren, reading, cooking, moving house and restoring and re-decorating old houses, friends, music, opera, pets and people watching ( there must be more). I don’t have dogs any more, but over the years have had seventeen, mostly rescued, usually three at a time, including three afghans, two salukis, a borzoi, a labrador, six cavalier King Charles spaniels, a boxer, a mastiff-boxer cross, a mastiff, plus the lodgers – the dogs who came to spend the day with me while their owners were at work !
It isn’t just pets that I care about, I’m involved with several world –wide animal organisations both to save animals from being tortured and exploited (including bull-fighting and bear-baiting) – and to save wild animals whose habitats are being destroyed by hunting or clearing. And of course, like the rest of us, I worry about preserving our planet before it’s too late.
I write this blog because I love writing – about anything – but actually I write about the things that interest me , and they’re different every day.