Hazel McHaffie

An unsolved mystery

Sunset in PortugalI came across an amusing and intriguing story this week.

Writer, Adam Nathan, saw an interesting quote by Alexandra K Trenfor and posted it on his blog:

The best teachers are those who show you where to look, but don’t tell you what to see.

Neat, apposite and thoughtful observation, yes? You can see why he quoted it. At first nothing in particular happened, but after a couple of weeks, to his astonishment, search engines suddenly started routing the keywords ‘Alexandra K. Trenfor’ traffic to him. He was intrigued and started to ask, who exactly is Alexandra K Trenfor? And he drew a blank.

The question then became, is she real? Does she exist? Is this a pseudonym? Other people started to research the name. All drew a blank.

The only other adages attributed to her, I can find are:

Be loving. And if you don’t feel loving, then simply be kind. Kindness is just love in her daily clothes.

Youth is wasted on the young – and wisdom on the old.

But who really wrote them? Any of you knowledgeable readers and amateur sleuths have inside information? A delicious mystery. Can you help us solve it? Triggers the germ of an idea for a novel, huh?

(I used to be a researcher in a former life, so I know all about the deadly sin of quoting other people’s work without referencing it accurately. Makes me uneasy even writing about this weird situation.)


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