I had a Farm in Africa, at the foot of the Ngong Hills … by © Kira Bodensted

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I had a Farm in Africa, at the foot of the Ngong Hills … by 


in Around the World Jan 13th 2010 and
in Moody, Dark, Evocative Jan 17th 2010

Texture background courtesy of ghostbones
Photo of KB is my photo of a photo at the KB Museum

Baroness Karen von Blixen-Finecke (Apr 17th 1885 – Sept. 7th 1962, was the daughter of writer and army officer Wilhelm Dinesen and Ingeborg Westenholz.
She was a Danish author also known under her pen name Isak Dinesen. Blixen wrote works both in Danish and in English. She is best known, at least in English, for Out of Africa, her account of living in Kenya, and one of her stories, Babette’s Feast, both of which have been adapted into highly acclaimed, Academy Award-winning motion pictures. In Denmark she is best known for her works Out of Africa and Seven Gothic Tales.
In 1913 Karen Dinesen became engaged to her second-cousin, the Swedish Baron Bror von Blixen-Finecke, after a failed love affair with his brother. The couple moved to Kenya, where in early 1914 they used family money to establish a coffee plantation, hiring African workers, predominantly the Kikuyu tribespeople who lived on the farmlands at the time of their arrival. About the couple’s early life in Africa, Karen Blixen later wrote, "Here at long last one was in a position not to give a damn for all conventions, here was a new kind of freedom which until then one had only found in dreams!”
The two were quite different in education and temperament, and Bror Blixen was unfaithful to his wife. She was diagnosed with syphilis toward the end of their first year of marriage, which although eventually cured (some uncertainty exists), created medical anguish for years afterwards. The Blixens separated in 1921 and were divorced in 1925.
During her early years in Kenya Karen Blixen met the English big game hunter Denys Finch Hatton, and after her separation she and Finch Hatton developed a close friendship which eventually became a long-term love affair. Finch Hatton used Blixen’s farmhouse as a home base between 1926 and 1931, when he wasn’t leading one of his clients on safari. He died in the crash of his de Havilland Gipsy Moth biplane in 1931. At the same time, the failure of the coffee plantation, due to the worldwide economic depression and the unsuitability of her farm’s soil for coffee growing, forced Blixen to abandon her beloved farm. The family corporation sold the land to a residential developer, and Blixen returned to Denmark, where she lived for the rest of her life.
Blixen died in 1962 at Rungstedlund, her family’s estate, at the age of 77.

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©All rights reserved. All images contained on these pages are © copyright protected by Kira Bodensted and any use of these images in any form without her written permission will be considered an infringement of these copyrights.

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  • Christina Backus
    Christina Backusalmost 5 years ago

    This is wonderful! The idea of the open pages works really well – very evocative of her as a writer and of course her beloved Africa.

  • Thank you Christina for your lovely comment – much appreciated :o)

    – © Kira Bodensted

  • Steve Silverman
    Steve Silvermanalmost 5 years ago

    Wow, great image, Kira and equally great backstory.

  • Thank you very much Steve – I’m glad you enjoyed it :o)

    – © Kira Bodensted

  • Alicia  Liliana
    Alicia Lilianaalmost 5 years ago

    Great artwork with lovely tones and textures Kira, and very interesting story of this lady’s life….thoroughly enjoyed reading it :))

  • Thank you very much Liliana – I’m glad you enjoyed the story which I had to cut short. What a fascinating but not easy life she had. And such a great talent. She only needed people to give her a few words and she would spin the most fascinating story from those words. She was a true storyteller.

    – © Kira Bodensted

  • frogster
    frogsteralmost 5 years ago

    Stunning image Kira

  • Thank you so much Larry – I really appreciate your kind comment and the fav :o))

    – © Kira Bodensted

  • banrai
    banraialmost 5 years ago

    wonderful image

  • Thank you very much banrai :o)

    – © Kira Bodensted

  • David's Photoshop
    David's Photoshopalmost 5 years ago

    Great work Kira, well done.

    David xx

  • Thank you very much David (and i didn’t make it for B – and i wont fall apart if you don’t accept it :o))

    – © Kira Bodensted

  • Heps
    Hepsalmost 5 years ago

    Oh, you really outdone yourself this time! Love the music and the history lesson it just makes this so much more enjoyable! Full marks, my friend!

  • Thank you for that lovely comment Taschja – I’m so glad you enjoyed the story too – had to cut it short but if you want more it’s on Wikipedia.
    Kira xx

    – © Kira Bodensted

  • Christine Oakley
    Christine Oakleyalmost 5 years ago


  • Thanks a mill Christine – posted my txs in group forum too
    Kira xx

    – © Kira Bodensted

  • Andrew Paranavitana
    Andrew Paranav...almost 5 years ago

    Wow Kira, what a fantastic piece! Love your concept of a book, works perfectly. So much work has gone into this creation, well done!

  • Well – it seemed the natural thing to do since she was all about books.
    Thank you for the fav and your lovely comment :o))

    – © Kira Bodensted

  • salena
    salenaalmost 5 years ago

    Smukt Kira! Det ville hun ha elsket!!

  • Tak Tina – jeg besøgte hendes museum med de private stuer sidste vinter og jeg har læst hende for mange år siden. Hun var en meget stærk kvinde – beundringsværdig på mange måder.

    – © Kira Bodensted

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