My wonderful childhood memories are a time that I will forever visit. A series of events, melting into one another like the flavours of ice cream my sisters and I would fondle with our tongues, lingering with the sweetness and coolness of colours. Dad, revisiting his own past in the journey shared with his family of this exuberant experience.
We never knew which night would take us by surprise. He would knock on our doors at what seemed midnight, and announce in his thundering prophetic voice.
"Girls, let's go for a drive to Geelong for some ice cream!"
With our pillows and blankets in hand we leaped into the station wagon with phenomenal anticipation. Not only for the pleasure at where we would arrive, but for the adventure towards it. Sing-a-longs would fuel our journey, and stories of his childhood antics would leave us laughing so much it was an aperitif.
Some nights it was Frankston, other nights, Lonsdale Street or even Adelaide. Yes, dad was unpredictable and enthusiastic about his family.
I used to lament with desperation when days would pass and I didn't hear that voice. He would be working, as mum would inform us, and later when we were 'old enough', we realised he spent his entire days working and entire nights awake playing cards with 'the boys' at the 'wog bar'. Arriving home at seven in the morning to see us off to school and then go to work himself. Dad never slept.
Walking amongst the woods of Sherbrooke Forrest, barbeques, picnics at Dromana and five am rises to greet the surfers and waves at Portsea while we walked through caves. This is what I see when Christos erupts from my heart and pours out from my eyes.
Although he died last year, I know he is proud that he instilled in us, the qualities of his heart and greatness of his life's knowledge.