I had a traumatic experience over the Christmas holiday break. Though it took place in early January, only now do I feel ready to share.
Here’s what happened – I lost my shark.
He arrived in our lives on Christmas Day; a gift from the wonderful Megan, who knows very well that men are just children wrapped in flabbier skin.
Buy them presents on that basis and you’ll never go wrong.
For the first few days after arrival, he was just a box with a picture of a shark on it. Not a very big box, certainly not one that demanded instant attention amongst the toys and food of festive insanity.
Little did we know how he would touch the hearts of each and every one of us.
It was about a week later that I opened the box, read the instructions and spent two to three hours assembling, swearing and inflating my shark.
That’s when the transformation took place.
From a piece of cellophane and a small tank of helium came an impressive, menacing yet domesticated creature of the deep.
He was mesmerising.
He would float in mid air, his big, dark shark eyes looking for prey, then with a press of a button on the remote control, there’d be a swish of his tail and he would “swim” elegantly across the room.
He could dive, he could climb and you couldn’t tear your eyes away. What a toy!
Our shark was alive! It had personality, character and it didn’t bite one of us! My daughters named him Bruce because, like many children of the Finding Nemo generation, they believe all sharks are called Bruce.
Bruce quickly became a member of our family and we had hours of good times.
But our summer of sharky fun could not last forever and it would seem our fondness for Bruce was perhaps not reciprocated.
So it was, only three hours after I had assembled him, that Bruce made a break for freedom.
While my back was turned, and cleverly utilising the air currents from a freshly opened window, Bruce squeezed through the impossibly small gap of a half-open door.
I was alerted by the laughing and taunts of our neighbours.
“Shark! Shark! It’s escaping! You’re a poor shark wrangler!”
I raced outside to see Bruce climbing and air-swimming on the breeze, a big smile on his cellophane face. I could only wave my friend goodbye.
The whole family was affected by this tragedy.
I was disproportionately upset. I really missed Bruce. Summer suddenly seemed greyer and less joyous.
Then two wonderful things happened.
Firstly, in a truly touching gesture, my eldest daughter, tears in her eyes, presented me a shark she had drawn, hoping to ease my pain.
Talk about tugging at the heartstrings.
Secondly, my wife ordered me a new floating shark which arrived only two days later.
He is awesome! We still have him. His name is Bruce.
- Family8 foodie road trip adventures that your family will love
Now To LoveToday 5:00pm
- Diet & NutritionIs margarine actually bad for you? Four myths busted
Now To LoveToday 4:00pm
- At homeHow the right retirement village enabled mum to be mum again
Now To LoveToday 2:25pm
- RoyalsPrince Harry's stunning wildlife photography is revealed in celebration of Earth Day
Now To LoveToday 11:31am
- RoyalsHow the Royal Family spent the day on the Queen’s 93rd birthday
Now To LoveToday 9:15am
- CareerThe Kiwi couple who are making comfy prosthetic breasts
New Zealand Woman's WeeklyToday 9:00am
- At homeWhy a magazine subscription is the perfect gift for you or someone you love
Now To LoveToday 9:00am
- CareerAnnabelle White's recipe to living a happy, contented life
New Zealand Woman's WeeklyToday 8:42am
- FamilyFamily meal inspiration: Jo Seagar's 'loaves and fishes' approach to family meals
The Australian Women's WeeklyYesterday 12:00pm
- MindWhy travel memories play an important part in helping to develop our personality
Good Health ChoicesYesterday 10:00am
- TVDancing With The Stars' Manu Vatuvei's biggest fear when it comes to the dance floor
Woman's DayYesterday 8:00am
- Celebrity NewsDoting dad Ronan Keating enjoys a family day out at Auckland's waterfront
Woman's DayApr 21, 2019
- BodyMatilda Green talks motherhood, mental wellbeing and her plans for the future
Good Health ChoicesApr 21, 2019
- FitnessThese dance workouts will be so fun that you won't even feel like you're exercising
Good Health ChoicesApr 20, 2019
- RoyalsHappy birthday Her Majesty! Celebrating 93 years with Queen Elizabeth II
Now To LoveApr 20, 2019