What a great afternoon in Manly on Sunday 28th October. It was an engaging experience of good storytelling and food with some captivating stories from the audience. Our oldest teller was ninety years old and in fact he told two stories to the whole group. He said that he had never been to anything like this before and thoroughly enjoyed it. We had 13 stories - some long, some short shared with the whole group and of course plenty of stories shared at the tables over the meal.
Our two featured tellers both started the day with folktales. Christine Carlton told The Lady of Stavoren, a tale about greed that completely changes the fortunes of a whole town. A photo of a statue of the Lady in the Netherlands town added further interest in the tale. It also generated some other great stories at the tables about statues, monuments, tombstones, and markers that record the history, legends, incidents, accomplishments of people who contributed to the story of places, phenomenon and events.
Other tales about monuments and statues included Susan’s trek up Mt Kosiosko to the monument, Rhiannon’s journey to a monument in Wales, Peter’s knowledge of statues of early Australian Govenors and the legacies of their decisions for early Sydney Development, Gary’s recall of a Spike Milligan’s epitaph “See I told you I was sick” that led to what might be written on our own tombstones. Much laughter and wit from the audience was revealed.
Sue Alvarez followed with her tale of The Peddler of Swaffham who following a dream went on a journey seeking treasure only to find it back at home. The wonderful thing about both old folktales was how they held universal truths and challenges that connected with people’s own life journeys today.
The food was delivered, savoured and completed before we continued with other great stories of travel experiences. - From overseas - a Japanese wedding in cultural dress and learning of different wedding cultural customs. This prompted further stories about travelling and cultural challenges and delights. Then there were dangers in the middle of a dark and stormy night in France. It was lovely then to hear some humorous stories from our travels here locally in Sydney - another misadventure in night time darkness whilst visiting relatives, A story of an unusual train trip where Elvis records were launched like frizbees from a moving train in Petersham Sydney,- unsuspecting travellers couldn’t believe that Elvis was raining down on them.
The whole afternoon was so much fun. Community engagement, laughter, surprise, food and of course our lucky door gifts of wine, chocolates and other little items that people enjoy.
Lunch and Tales will resume next year. Look out for your opportunity to enjoy such a wonderful experience.