This work features stories that teach us to tell time. Coming from
a family that some would call addicted to storytelling, Sally
Russell began listening nearly twenty years ago especially for
stories that bring the past into the present. The subjects range
from love, sex, and death to less weighty considerations such as
journeys, building fires, cooking, and a variety of family matters.
Beginning with her own family's account of what happened to them
during the American Civil War and how those stories directly
affected her life 125 years later, Russell shares the discovery of
time-traveling through a range of tales that are humorous,
historical, haphazard, heart-warming, and heartbreaking, often
within the same story. For Russell, all stories, however personal
or cultural, represent shared human history and form an intricate,
original, and sheltering tapestry that belongs to all and
represents a curious security in our future-shock world. Through
beloved old stories and through new ones forming, threads of
regret, sorrow, joy, wonder, courage, wisdom, beauty, and some
other thing that isn't any of these things - perhaps the greatest
mystery - are woven into a fabric that entertains, educates, and
delights with scenes of days gone by, portraits of worthwhile
people, and events that shaped our characters. Story-telling is an
important vehicle by which we bond with each other in multiple
dimensions and generations. The stories she shares show how
story-telling gives us a latitude of home, to use an old nautical
term, i.e., a reference point on our map of being that shows us
where we came from. In a figurative sense, latitude of home is that
place/time from which we start. Our stories, our family myths, give
us the knowledge of our place in Time. Russell invites readers to
consider their own repertoires of stories, what they can learn
about and from their own family myth, and how they can share that
myth to inform, delight and strengthen.
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