Sunday, June 21, 2009

Musing On: Under an Acorn Tree, thinking of Virginia Woolf.

It is midwinter here in Australia and, with the shortest day of the year drawing to a close, I have found myself rereading Virginia Woolf.

image courtesy of Barnes & Noble
who state on the jacket:

'Women must have money and rooms of their own, Woolf told her audience, if they are to write fiction. They must have the liberty "to travel and to idle, to contemplate the future and the past of the world, to dream over books and loiter at street corners and let the line of thought dip deep into the stream." They must write books on every subject and fertilize every field of knowledge with their own understanding; and their writing must draw on both the masculine and feminine parts of themselves, for "it is when this fusion takes place that the mind is fully fertilized and uses all its faculties." Then, when the next woman is born whose gift is a match for Shakespeare's, her talent will be allowed to bloom.'

Virginia Woolf's room at Monk's House

Despite the rain, I was reminded of summer and then of summer in one house in particular. It is hard to imagine that this tiny cottage is in South Australia, but that is exactly where it is, near Stirling in the Adelaide Hills, tucked under a giant oak tree. The sensitive restoration project was inspired in part by 'Monk's House', owned by Virginia Woolf from 1915 until her death in 1941. The photographs taken at the end of summer, on Valentines Day, do not show the garden to its best advantage!

Acorn Cottage, built prior to the proclamation of the state of South Australia and was once a Public House (Pub) know as the 'Half Way House', located on the old bullock trail south of the Old Mount Barker Road.

The cottage is comprised of a honeycomb of rooms, not all of which are shown

the summer garden, exhausted by the heat

the windows flung open to let the summer breeze through the cottage

The original shingle roof underneath the iron roof was a home to several bats prior to restoration

If walls could talk.....

The remains of the old bar, from behind which refreshments were once served, has been retained in the bedroom.

I am reminded of summer
image via Amazon (currently out of stock)

1 comment:

little augury said...

EL- such a beautiful spot to languish, and I too have been brushing up on VWoolf. I have posted very recently on Bloomsbury with the help of LBG. Though longish-grab a penguin mug of something-orange to sip while reading. This room of one's own idea- I found as originating from Vanessa. It seems these two sisters were always telegraphing one another. A fascinating group- I just skimmed the surface. Again an idyllic spot you share

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