In a few days time I will be on a plane heading back to a place that has given me so much. Wonderful friends, my eldest child (“Made in China”, ahem) and a beloved career. Oh, and let’s not forget the unnaturally eager predilection for yum cha.
My last trip to Macau was in October. I took my two biggest girls back with me for the launch of the picture book, Marjory and the Mouse. Announcing the trip was a blast – two enormous fortune cookies with surprise messages inside – but the trip itself surprised me; it exceeded all my expectations. Travelling solo and long-haul with two kids make you think of that emoji face with the gritted teeth? I get it (I made that face many times before and during). But truly this trip was incredible for all of us. The girls got to experience a completely different culture, the sparkling lights of the casinos, the morning smogs, apartment living, fine dining, crazy taxi rides, heat and madness and a beautiful, heartfelt book launch with Marjory Vendramini, the inspiration and protagonist for Marjory and the Mouse. We were fortunate enough to visit Cradle of Hope, the orphanage Marjory founded and to which all the profits from the book go to, the day after the launch and the girls saw how the kids live and are cared for with all the love and support Marjory and her team provides them. Okay, so they still mostly remember the trip to Hong Kong Disneyland but perhaps, one day, the other experiences will be recalled and cherished. It was a joy, for me at least, to watch them experiencing so much for the first time. I didn’t expect to get such a huge buzz out of that.
But this time I am travelling solo. I have been invited by Helder Beja and his hard-working team to The Script Road – Macau Literary Festival. The festival schedule is jam-packed with authors, filmmakers and artists of all kinds; two weeks of dialogue, celebration and inspiration, which I am hugely honoured to be a part of. I am also very excited to be visiting two schools as part of the festival – International School of Macau (Monday, March 13th) and Zheng Guanying Official School (Tuesday, March 14th) as well as a public event with three other festival guests:
Writing from Within or Without – The Local vs the Universal
Sunday March 12, Old Court Building, Macau
I am really going to miss my two tiny travel partners-in-crime (they have placed their present orders) but returning to Macau, to talk about Marjory and the Mouse and the incredible role model Marjory Vendramini is for us all, being part of such a dynamic, ambitious, trilingual literary festival such as The Script Road is an opportunity I could not pass up. Extra bonus – going to the bathroom by myself. Yes!! (Parents are nodding)
If you are based in Macau (or Hong Kong!) I would love to see you at The Script Road. It’s worth scrolling through the festival schedule for events, concerts and performances that tickle your fancy. And if you’re not near Macau I promise to post photos. Here, on instagram and on facebook. Without my accompanying travel duo I will have free hands for taking snaps! Imagine that.