Author(s): Jennifer Severn
'D'you think you might've got the MS because you can't forgive your dad?'
That wasn't Jennifer Severn's doctor asking--or her psychologist. It was her lawyer, but it was a good question.
When Jen, aged 22, settled into a cab at Sydney Airport one rainy night in 1988, she'd taken pains to create a safe, sensible life for herself after an unhappy childhood. But that was about to take a turn. The driver was a follower of Bhagwan Sri Rajneesh, and the conversation that night set her on a new, dual existence--Jen the medical sales rep and Marga Sahi the Rajneesh disciple. Was it the strain of maintaining this double life that brought on an episode of visual disturbance--double vision, no less--in 1994?
Family dysfunction, inappropriate relationships, life as an 'Orange Person', a diagnosis of multiple sclerosis ... Jen bounced between Australia, India and Amsterdam before circumstances conspired to land her in Quaama, a small rural village on Dry River on the far south coast of New South Wales.
Will an unrestored 1840s shearer's cottage and a quirky rural community be her salvation?
Long Road to Dry River was shortlisted for the Finch Prize for Memoir in 2018.