We’re halfway through our August Adventures! Five down, five more to go. Here’s today’s adventure: Letters from Skye, by Jessica Brockmole.
And now over to Jessica:
Opportunity doesn’t always knock. Sometimes it slips quietly into the mailbox, folded, stamped, addressed. This was especially true in ages past, before the immediacy of email. College acceptances, job offers, invitations, declarations of love—once upon a time, they all began with a letter. An envelope that, when opened, led to adventure.
For Elspeth Dunn, a Scottish poet with more dreams than adventures, opportunity arrives one day in the form of a fan letter. The letter, from a college student in far-off Urbana, Illinois is more than a glimpse of life beyond the shores of her native Isle of Skye; it’s a line to reach it. Her correspondent, David, is a daredevil. He fills pages with his escapades, going places and doing things she’d only imagined. For David, that first fan letter is just one more adventure; for Elspeth, it’s only the first.
Elspeth wasn’t looking for adventure. She was doing the things women on Skye did in the early twentieth century—spinning, gardening, cutting peat, braiding rope from heather. She wandered the hills with a notebook and wrote poetry, published to small acclaim in London. She was content. But then that letter arrived, with its Illinois postmark and teasing praise, and she began to wonder. To wonder what else was out there, to wonder who else the world held, to wonder how far she could go.
The opportunity for adventure, no matter how small, isn’t always sought. It can arrive, unannounced and unexpected, making you wonder what more your life could be. That was true for me, when I was given the chance to move to Scotland. Like Elspeth, I was content. But opportunity quietly slipped in and I began wondering. That wondering took me across the ocean to the biggest adventure of my life.
Elspeth didn’t expect adventure, but when it arrived, she recognized it. When opportunity sends you a letter, all you have to do is reply.
To win, leave a comment on Jessica’s Facebook page telling her about a time you found adventure in your mailbox!
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The adventures continue tomorrow with Katherine Keenum’s Where the Light Falls….