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A way with words .. Esther Paddon, of Geraldine, checks out her latest book, Oodles of Oomph. PHOTO: CLAIRE ALLISON

by Claire Allison

Not everyone gets to be a rally champion’s inspiration.

Globe-trotting Geraldine grandmother and author Esther Paddon has that honour – her grandson Hayden wrote in the foreword for her latest book, Oodles of Oomph, that she had been a huge inspiration to him.

“When I thought something was too hard, I didn’t have to look far to find someone who was running more often than me, climbing mountains and travelling around the world.”

“I’m proud to call her my nana and hope I can be half the person she is.”

Oodles of Oomph is Mrs Paddon’s second book, containing stories of her overseas adventures and exploits closer to home; as she is nearly 83, these challenge perceptions about age limitations.

“I realised I had so many stories, and only I knew them, and perhaps the family might enjoy having them, too.”

She hoped others would enjoy her stories and musings, and make the publishing process – which she called “an awful hassle” – worthwhile.

Mrs Paddon did not know if there would be another book – if there was, it would likely be something completely different – but she certainly intended more travel.

Her diamond wedding gift earlier this year was a sturdy new travel pack, big enough for everything she needed as she explored the world.

She was eyeing up Amsterdam for the tulips, Italy, and the Passion Play in Bavaria; the pack seemed set to get some good use.

“It’s sort of in my blood, but it’s got to be budget travel, the other kind doesn’t interest me. I like staying with young people in hostels, and that kind of thing.”

Oodles of Oomph will be launched at the Geraldine High School library on March 13 at 7.30pm.

  • The Courier has a copy of Oodles of Oomph to give away to one lucky reader. Enter by emailing your name and contact number to claire.allison@timarucourier.co.nz with “Oodles of Oomph” in the subject line, or drop in or post your entry to The Courieroffices at 12-14 George St, Timaru. Entries close at 5pm on Friday, March 20.