On this tour, my companion will be my dear Aunt Therese. A formidable woman, she spent time in a convent as a young woman, but shortly before taking her final vows, she experienced an awakening of her personal sense of power. The night before she was to take her vows, she dreamt of a white owl, which flew into her cloistered cell through the small window that was positioned so high, she could not see out. The owl landed on her chest, and she felt its great weight, as it peered into her eyes with its own large orbs. She stared, terrified, and it snapped its beak at her and uttered one word, in a tone full and low: “Freedom.” It flew away then, and dazed, she fell back into slumber. The next morning when she awoke at first dawn, she found a single feather on her breast. She packed her few things, left the convent, and has travelled the world, dedicating herself to a life of freedom and to helping others, especially women, children, and animals, to do the same. She will meet me at designated points along the journey.