In Cocktail Hour Under the Tree of Forgetfulness Alexandra Fuller returns to Africa and to her unforgettable family. At the heart of this family, and central to the lifeblood of her latest story, is Fuller’s iconically courageous mother, Nicola. Born on the Scottish Isle of Skye to a warlike clan of highlanders and raised in Kenya’s perfect equatorial light, Nicola holds dear the values most likely to get you hurt or killed in Africa: loyalty to blood, passion for land, and a holy belief in the restorative power of all animals.
We see Nicola as an irrepressible child in western Kenya, then with the man who fell in love with her, Tim Fuller. The young couple begin their life in a lavender colored honeymoon period; but in short order, an accumulation of mishaps and tragedies bump up against history until the Fullers find themselves in a world they hardly recognize. We follow Tim and Nicola as they hopscotch the continent, restlessly trying to establish a home, from Kenya to Rhodesia to Zambia, even returning to England briefly. War, hardship, and tragedy seem to follow the family even as Nicola fights to hold onto her children, her land, her sanity. But just when it seems that Nicola has been broken by the continent she loves, it is the African earth—and Tim’s acceptance of her love for this earth—that revives her.
Following the ghosts and dreams of memory, Cocktail Hour Under the Tree of Forgetfulness is Alexandra Fuller at her very best. Download and start listening now!