Kiting with Fate

“How had it come to this?”

Such would be my thoughts seconds before diving my kite and getting to my feet and starting to pick my path out through the waist and chest high shore break. Maybe not so much how—we’d eventually come to learn a last minute decision to head home for my mind boggling 25th high school reunion had sealed the biological deal—but, more to the point, ‘WHY?’

Less than 20 minutes earlier my only concern was that of a 44 year old guy waiting for the wind to reach an acceptable level for an afternoon kite session. If I REALLY, REALLY, REALLY make the effort, I can vaguely remember back to a time when I was able to let such concerns dominate my waking hours. Funny how easy it is to forget what LBC (Life Before Child) entailed. For all intents and purposes, between travels and seasonal work, I’d been on my own schedule for the majority of my adult life.

But a phone call had changed tDSC_2767hat.
“Someone for you,” I’d said to Bec handing her the phone with a facial expression I’m sure proved I had no idea who’d just asked for ‘Rebecca’.

Less than thirty seconds into the chat, the tone of the one sided exchange and Bec’s own body language shot a fleeting glimmer of recollection into my balding skull. The memory involved a doctor’s check-up a week earlier and the routine pregnancy test that had been administered at the time.

At the prompting of the  voice on the other end, Bec was now sitting down. I stood in the back doorway staring out, watching the scene unfold, my hand eagerly searching out a counter top for stabilization purposes. But as she hung up the phone and walked towards me, our eyes would meet and no further words needed to be spoken.I immediately told myself I needed a kite as badly as I ever had but, in the end, I’d ride for no more than a single hour that afternoon. Each tack suddenly filled me with more strange and looming questions; more, it seemed, than I’d ever pondered in my entire life to that point.

I rode tentative and more safety conscience than ever before. So much so I found myself bored with an activity I’d always believed I ‘loved more than almost anything’. But on that day, with the world seemingly spinning out of control, I knew I needed solid ground beneath my feet.
With my kite broken down and gear packed away seemingly by itself, I started the five minute walk back across the Gold Coast Highway…”home”.

And for the first time in my life the word had a different ring to it.


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