Be inspired by this story of personal liberation that will make you get up and own your life!
Living an ordinary life, journalist Jay Banks gets the chance of a lifetime to interview the dying world famous author Katherine Johnson. In her wildest dreams, Jay could not predict the unusual encounter with Katherine Johnson would shake her and make her question every important aspect of her life. Suddenly, every action, feeling, relationship and choice is cast in doubt…
Jay’s story offers every reader, young and old, a fresh and powerful way to examine the most important parts of life and shift from ordinary existence to fascinating and exciting living. Joining Jay Banks as she goes through pain and awakening on her journey of liberation allows readers to take an important step forward towards their own personal freedom.
I want to read it out loud to everyone
I just wanted to tell you … this morning my university class was cancelled.
Normally, I would have gone straight to work, but I had a doctor’s appointment at 10, so I decided to sleep in a little, then I got to city and decided I didn’t want to go to work until after the doctor’s appointment – I wanted to sit in a café and have a mocha and read some more of your story…
I was thinking to myself as I walked to the cafe that a year ago, I would not have done this, because I would have felt bad not going to work, but today, I felt good for deciding to do what I felt like doing, so it was very funny indeed when I was reading up to the bit where Katherine asks ‘What will happen if you don’t go to work?’ and what did happen? Nothing! Other than I got to sit in a café with a warm lovely drink and read your wonderful story!
At certain times during the day, I just feel like I want to read it out aloud to everyone so they can hear it.
Tina Riveros, Teacher, Lawyer & Counselor, Brisbane
About the author Ronit Baras
Ronit Baras is an author, a life coach, a journalist and a motivational speaker. Born with a physical disability to a migrant family, Ronit battled with childhood illness, was kicked out of high school and endured the loss of two children. Yet, she transformed her life into a living example of “mind over matter”.
Ronit completed a degree in Special Education (with flying colors), specialized in emotional intelligence while travelling and working around the world with her husband and kids, published numerous articles, wrote personal growth books and coached many people to happiness.
Ronit’s journey from sickness to health, from failure to success and from sadness to happiness will captivate every reader. Against all odds, with passion, determination and “can do” attitude, she turned each challenge in her life into great success. Ronit is an expert in personal development, specializing in accelerated learning, communication, relationships, parenting, work-life balance, self-confidence and stress management.
Take a peek inside In the Outback with Jasmine Banks
The first time Mark had invited her to dinner, Jay had tried to get some information about him. She had found out that he had two teenage sons and was a workaholic, a flexible boss and very professional. A year after he had joined as chief editor, the board had asked him to sign up for 5 years, but he had refused. He never invited any of his team members for dinner. He didn’t drink, he didn’t smoke and he was divorced.
“Divorced?! You don’t need this, Jay, trust me. It’s like he has a diploma in broken relationships,” her mum told her when she reported that he had invited her for dinner.
Jay was a “safe” kind of girl. She wasn’t the type who played with fire, so she found a way to avoid dinner, even though she thought Mark Hayden was a really nice guy.
On Wednesdays, Mark’s sons used to come and stay the night with him. They entered the office in bare feet and wild hair. Jay watched them with envy. She couldn’t remember herself ever walking barefoot outside the house.
Once, only once, on the way home from Kindergarten, when she was 4 years old, she remembered her mum picking her up and she walked barefoot to the car, but only because they couldn’t find her shoes. Her mother talked about the shoes so much the next day that long afterwards, even during naptime, Jay slept with her shoes on.
What is going on with all of us?
Hi Ronit, We thank you very very much for your book “In the outback with Jasmine Banks”. The subtitle is “Journey to freedom” and that’s well chosen. The last 9 months gave so many problems with my health that we mentally hardly could survive. Your book came by mail to our address in the Netherlands and I started reading. Also did my wife. It’s not a big book, but really a page turner. It made me (and my wife) emotional, because I could recognize what was said by Katherine Johnson:
“It all started on the day I found out that I was going to die”
We realized this 16 years ago, when I heard for the first time that I had Non Hodgkin’s Lymphoma (lymph node cancer). After that, we tried to do the things we WANT to do for years. In the last 9 months, we lost that feeling. Your book made us realize how important it is to do the things you WANT and find the quality of life back, try to become happy again. We hope you will reach your aim of bringing this story to a million people around the world. We will support you with that. The strength of the book lies in the question “What is going on with Katherine?” The question must be “What is going on with all of us?” And then you have to conclude that we are all equal! With love, Jaap and Ali, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
“Call me Katherine. My name is Katherine and I love my name. What about you?”
“My name is Jasmine and I don’t like my name. That’s why everyone calls me Jay.”
“And why don’t you like your name?” asked Katherine and played with the white silk scarf hanging over her shoulder.
“I don’t know. The kids always made fun of me in school and pretended they smelt me. Jay is a much nicer name. Jay in Sanskrit means ‘victory’. Jasmine is an old lady’s name. Sorry, I didn’t mean to offend you,” she hurried to apologise. On paper, words came out much better. Jay wished the ground would open up and swallow her whole.
“Why should I be offended by the way you feel about your name?” Katherine asked, “Let’s go into this park. There is a different smell in the air. Australia has a different smell. I’ve been here once before. I have a friend who moved here with her husband and his four kids. They live in the outback. Tonight, we’re flying out to see them. I’ll expect you in a couple of days. They’re a wonderful couple. You’ll like them”.
Katherine Johnson was a mature woman, yet she sounded just like a little girl. Where could she possibly get all this energy from? Jay compared Katherine to her own mother. Her mum was “heavy” in her mentality. She thought everything was hard, everything was heavy, everything was complicated. Jay imagined Katherine Johnson’s three kids. What fun it must be to grow up with such a cool mum. Then again, maybe she wasn’t that cool before she found out she was going to die.
Katherine Johnson is going to inspire many people
I went to a friend’s house yesterday and we talked about a project we do together. I told her that on the weekend, I sat outside in my balcony and ate chocolate – two bars – and enjoyed every bite.
My friend looked at me surprised and I said to her, ‘Even Katherine Johnson said we must enjoy life’ and we both laughed. Katherine Johnson is going to inspire many people, like she inspired me. I can imagine every reader just doing this – having fun, enjoying life. Wouldn’t that be great?
Maria Delaney, Educational Consultant, Brisbane
A word from the author
I could start this book with “Once upon a time, in a land far, far away”, but I know that what’s happened to Jay Banks happens everywhere, every day and in everyone’s life. Living life with no direction and making decisions based on what we must, should or have to do only takes us backward, making us feel trapped and causing us misery and pain.
Although the characters in the story may be fictional, they are based on people I know. If you look around you, I’m sure you will be able to recognise them in your world too.
This book is part of a very special mission – to make the world a happy place by giving my readers permission to shine. I’m releasing this story to the world with the aim of reaching 1 million (1,000,000) people around the globe. It excites me to think that 1 million people will be joining me in spreading the word of positive thinking and personal freedom until it reaches all of humanity.
I hope you enjoy this story, reflect on it and be inspired to live a happy life.
Happiness is a choice!
“Helping YOU achieve success and happiness!”