This week I wanted to write about my dad. It’s been a few months now since I moved out of home, and aside from all the fun of a new adventure, I have been wowed by how much I miss him.
I like to joke that my dad and I didn’t become friends until I was thirteen, the age when I finally started caring about his holy grail; sport. Granted I was no cricketer or rugby player, he was up and early every Saturday morning to take me to my Netball games. I had never seen him so excited, or heard anyone pick apart the technique and strategy of a d-level team to quite such detail. It’ll come as no surprise to hear that he wanted sons, instead of the two daughters god gave him. My older sister, Cat, was athletic, but a fiery mix of independent and shy, and dad’s involvement in her sporting adventures didn’t always bode well. But I loved our debriefs, and such began our Saturday morning tea tradition. The bakery we frequented made the best caramel slices and vanilla milkshakes, so I probably would’ve accepted the offer even if his thoughts bored me to tears.
The tradition kept up all throughout my high school and university years, despite some gentle bullying from my uni team mates. I’m just chalking that up to jealousy – no one else was getting a free post-game milkshake!
One of my favourite days with him was when he told me he wanted to grow a beard. I was shocked into laughter… My father has always been a staunch shave-only kind of guy. Even the mere idea that a hairy man was a more manly man in our household was banned, he was that intense. I thought I might fall off my chair, or shoot milkshake out of my nose onto the table. But he was serious, and had tasked me with advising him through such uncharted territory. I did my best, but it was a constant battle figuring out how much he was willing to invest, and what would actually help him achieve something he wouldn’t constantly want to shave off.
It was a long and trying experience, but we got there, and has been a constant source of amusement for the both of us, and the rest of the family, over the years. Which is nice from his usual attempt at humour, which looks like it was gleaned straight from this site.
So I was just partaking in some retail therapy, and came across this beard care kit on Boots, and I cackled like a witch in my little room, scaring both my housemates into thinking I had finally lost the plot. It was the first brand we had ever tried, and came back to time and time again when other products turned the quest into a disaster. Mum has a particular.. fondness for the scent. So I bought it, and sent it to his address with a note: ‘Thinking of your beard.’ I know it doesn’t sound very funny, but I can just picture him smiling as he opens it, and that fills me with warmth every time I think about it. I can’t wait to go home and visit! So folks, appreciate those dads in your life who are enthusiastic and amusing, or have a good chuckle at mine!