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Jane Austen Conference


Hello Blog Buddies!

I have been enjoying the Winter school break with long, chatty 'catch ups' with friends 
as well as a quick jaunt to Canberra. Yes, I know, why visit a destination 
that is always significantly colder than...well anywhere?! 
The answer is, because I was participating in a conference that occurs every two years.


Many of you are probably unaware of my love for Jane Austen's novels. I simply adore the language and subtleties of the stories as well as the historical content contained in the pages.


This year's conference had a particular focus on the story 'Emma'. 
It should be noted that two hundred years ago, this book was first published, and so The Jane Austen Society of Australia (JASA) decided this conference should be dedicated to celebrate 'Emma,' a story that is still being read and loved in 2015.


The conference spanned three days and provided an opportunity to meet with friends, talk about books and to discuss and delight in 'all things Jane'. When I mentioned my holiday trip to friends and folk, many did enquire about how one could discuss a book..' for three days???' 
The answer is quite simply, three days was not enough! Many non-readers of Austen do not understand the historical content of the books. Therefore, lectures and presentations can inform the listener of politics, etiquette and fashion of the time. All of which fascinate me. 
I adore social history - that is, how we came to be where we are today.


The book itself is highly amusing and the characters entertaining. So it was with great anticipation that I headed up to Canberra.....which was, indeed, freezing!


This was the view from my hotel window.


This (below) was a view of our Capital's Parliament House, the cornerstone of our democracy.

(For those of you who can not recognise this famous Australian Landmark... 
move onto the next photo!)



Staying in a hotel with my dear friend, also meant we had the luxury of a buffet breakfast. I don't know why, but a cooked breakfast you don't need to cook or clean up after is highly rated in my life... It is such a treat! 




This was the juice and smoothy bar.... woot woot!


At the conference, we were also spoilt with a 'goody bag'.... (How lovely.)


The gifts included these hand-made cookies. The delicate creations were made by 
'The Well-Read Cookie' and the website to her literary inspired cookies can be found Here

(I personally love the 'Very Hungry Caterpillar' range you can see on the website.)


They were truly adorable ... and as I later discovered, quite delicious as well.


I also managed another purchase during my 'get a way'. The packaging alone was 
enough to grab my attention.



It was a beautiful bone china cup that displays a quote from 'Emma' on one side and the author's name on the other. There were several designs to choose from including my first love, 'Pride and Prejudice' but as I was at the 'Emma' conference, I decided to 'stick with the theme'.



This beautiful bag also made an appearance. My gorgeous husband bought his bag for me one Christmas from the Jane Austen store in Bath, England. 
Therefore, I felt there was no better place for this item to be 'given an outing'.


I met and made new friends throughout the days I was there. 
(Yes, there were men at the conference too!!)


I also had fun and enjoyed spending time with people I have known for years.


(It was also funny seeing this new adaptation of 'Emma' in the airport bookshop as I waited for my flight back to Melbourne.... Ms Austen's stories continue to entertain.)


To Jane!




1 comment

Evolve Boldly said...

It is too bad that we don't have a continuing span of books by Miss Austen. I've read them all and some days I will spend hours watching a PBS adaptation of one of her works (I've seen most quite a few times!). But I was an early follower of Alexander McCall Smith (I love the look into a unique culture that he provides) but had no idea that he had retold the tale of Emma. I'm going to make breakfast now, but I will return to learn more about your world (I need to learn more about Australia in general, my husband is adopted and all the DNA tests suggest that about 90% of his living DNA is in Australia and New Zealand although he was born in Hawaii and raised in Chicago). It's a small, small world!

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