When I reflect about my Dad around Father’s Day, I think about the stories, and there is one memory that stands out for me. When I was a girl, I lived in a remote village in Papua New Guinea with my family. My Dad set up a warehouse for the village and surrounds so they could easily access the tools they needed to collect clean, fresh water. We lived simply: there was limited daily electricity through a generator, no television, no shops (everything was flown in or food was bartered from local gardens) and I didn’t have access to many toys, but I remember the time as very happy.
One of the sources of childhood fun was riding my bike Dad shipped over from Australia. A typical day saw me doing 3 hours of school at home with mum and my sisters, a hot lunch, and then the afternoon was spent playing, often riding my bike around the house. One hot sticky afternoon, my sisters and I were splashing in a toddler pool in the backyard under a guava tree. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw the shed door open. I froze. I could only see the shed partially from my position at the back of the house and I wondered if I had imaged the door opening. The next thing I saw was my bike being wheeled out. It was blue. By the time my sisters and I had the courage to move, my bike was long gone. You can imagine how devastated I was. There was no option to buy another one either, and so it was.
But the story doesn’t finish there, because my Dad didn’t forget about my bike. He did a lot of travelling and said he would always look out for it for the off chance he might find it for me. Many months later, he saw a red bike in a village far away. It wasn’t blue like my bike, but it was my bike. He could tell. The bike had been painted. Dad offered to buy it. He had already paid for the bike in Australia, shipped it over, and yet he paid for it again and brought it home. That’s the sort of Dad he is. It was amazing to find it after so long, and I was so happy. My hero!
Father’s Day is a wonderful time to bring out the stories. An idea is to couple a memory of dad with a relevant experience gift to say thank you. I’ve used the RedBalloon service before and I’ve also experienced some of their services for myself over the years. There are over 2,000 gifts to choose from, from car racing and scenic flights to wine tasting and gourmet hampers. Below are some ideas how coupling an experience gift with a memory could work.
Below is a list of experiences myself and our family have personally experienced over the years. All of them were great!
L to R
- Story Bridge Climb – Brisbane
- Abseiling – Glass House Mountain
- Make up lesson and product
- Cruise, sand tobogganing & dolphin feeding
- Day Photography Course
- Glow worm night tour and dinner
- The Workshops Rail Museum Tour
There is much to be said for the gifting of experience; unlike material things, they can’t be replaced and won’t wear out. Experiences are lived, and enjoyed, and form part of our memories. Perhaps that is why I often think of this type of gift for the father figures in my life, because it’s a reflection of all the support they give over the years; of the fun times and crazy times, of the memories that become stories to tell.
Browse over 2,000 gifts at RedBalloon.com.au
Giveaway is over. Winner has been emailed.
Win a $100 RedBalloon voucher to put towards any experience you like. Simply head over to RedBalloon.com.au come back here and answer in the comments below what gift you would give your Dad/Father Figure and why?
Giveaway ends 5:00 pm AEST on Thursday 3 September 2015. Please ready the full terms and conditions here.