Invoked memories by Chrissy Guinery

I saw my hubby come alive last night.

With five kids and 7 grandkids we didn’t expect to have a quiet Father’s Day. But it’s been a funny year for us. Strangely, on Mother’s Day in May we were in a separate State from all our offspring and celebrated it just the two of us for the first time since beginning to pop kiddies into this world 32 years ago.

Father’s Day was a similar story. Very strange. We had proposed to be travelling, so our children made plans of their own, plans to be with their fathers-in-law. When our idea fell through unexpectedly, we found ourselves just the two of us again.

An evening fire provided the perfect opportunity for slow-cooking a couple of beef steaks with the wild garlic and fresh herbs we’d gathered, so we sat around tapping the keys of our laptops soaking in the warmth from the fire and the aroma of our pending dinner in the stillness.

This is where my hubby comes alive… at the close of day, when all is calm, and the darkness brings its own unique energy.

We’d had a delightful day sharing stories and a rice pasta dish together on the grass beside Buzz (our technicolour van). We’d ventured off into the bush and wandered along the beach for a while. We’d stopped to watch a bunny hop away in a zig-zag fashion; marveled over a wedge-tail eagle souring effortlessly upon the wind; and had stumbled upon a mob of kangaroos where we watched, fixated, the tiny heads popping out of pouches whenever the joeys’ mummies bent down to eat the grass – the little ones having an inquisitive nibble here and there. We’d gathered a few sticks, stopped to explore a new-found algae forming on a few dead branches scattered around the forest floor, and meandered home along the lake where the sparkling, still water was clear as glass.

But THIS is where he comes alive. He LOVES chewing the fat around a camp fire. Fireside reminiscing is where he gets his groove on. We grabbed few favourite CDs and put some old tunes on. Laying back in our cushioned camp-chairs, we let the memories flood over us. Randomly, as the movies-in-our-minds were recalled, we marveled about the many bands we’d seen live, about the festivals we’d attended, and the moods and vibes different lyrics provoked. Hubby was actively animated as he got more and more excited. As the memories popped into our heads, they poured out like liquid velvet. So rich were some stories we almost felt transported there – drunk on the tonic of tastes and tunes.

As much as we savoured our succulent beef, literally falling off the bone, we luxuriated-in our memories. Hubby laughed and waved his arms about and shook his head and poured out one narrative after another, stories of happy times together. He was in his element. His eyes shone in the firelight as another memory seemed invoked by the flames.

We stoked that fire and shared our tales for hours.

Expressing love and gratefulness for our past; appreciating the indulgent richness of the night we were experiencing; and looking further into the future at many more memories to gather and store and share on nights such as this.

Simple, quiet fun. Bonding. Marvelling.

Occasionally reaching for the other’s hand to squeeze as we finished one another’s sentences and allowed the intrigue and romance to permeate the cool night air.

Partaking together around a small fire.

It was a glorious Father’s Day, filled with Love, Joy and Happy Vibes.