One of my most vivid, non-family-related childhood memories, is of a man walking along the street in a thunderstorm holding a massive garden table umbrella. Not particularly exciting, granted, but I’m talking supersized golf umbrella kinda scale. As a six-year-old, this was unusual to say the least and if I remember correctly, utterly hilarious. Had the young ‘PeakTimeTaler’ in me had the nerve, I would’ve grabbed my disposable camera and voila, captured the moment for all eternity.
Fast-forward more than a couple of decades, and I found myself being treated to a trip down memory lane. While enjoying a delightful riverside lunch with my Mum on Friday, I was left reliving said thunderstorm moment all over again. As we gazed out across the water, sipping extra cool beverages (overpriced coconut water & cranberry juice) and putting the world to rights, I saw a vaguely familiar silhouette approaching. Could it be Umbrella Man in another form? Surely not? Surely yes! My face lit up, conversation came to a standstill and I reached for my camera phone. Sailing along in a tiny wooden boat, enjoying the sun and the views, were two people keeping cool under the shade of a GIANT. BLUE. PARASOL. They had no idea the simple delight they brought to my afternoon. I all but swam across and joined them.
Yes, the context and the weather may be completely different, but the impact – priceless. I chuckled to myself as they sailed on by, perhaps making a memory for another young onlooker…highly unlikely.