Humans were designed for adventure. Boys and men, especially, are hard-wired for it. Yes, yes, I know we’re all meant to ‘stay safe’ and ‘look after ourselves’, but especially after the last several years of incessant self-care reminders, I’ll go out on a limb here and say it loud: BRING BACK ADVENTURE!
Before I’m accused of being reckless and irresponsible, consider what the great scientist Albert Einstein hypothesised about adventure, or play for those of us young at heart: ‘Play is the highest form of research.’
The American aviation pioneer and writer Amelia Earhart said: ‘Adventure is worthwhile in itself’, and the author Mark Jenkins wrote: ‘Adventure is a path. Real adventure – self-determined, self-motivated, often risky – forces you to have firsthand encounters with the world.’ Good food for thought, indeed.
Adventure doesn’t always need to be elaborate or expensive. I’ve written before about how adventurous cardboard boxes can be for younger kids, and here’s a story about a dad called Nigel Marsh (no relation) whose son Harry had ‘the best day of (his) life, ever!’ after an adventure to the local park, pizza for dinner, and then a bedtime story, with his dad all to himself.
For our kids, quality time with Dad is a critical part of the adventure.
Another thing about adventure: it rarely just ‘happens’. It’s true that some of the best adventures are those spur-of-the-moment, spontaneous kinds; but the reality is, adventure, more often than not, must be planned. If we spent our lives waiting for adventure to happen to us, we could be waiting a very long time indeed, and life would be quite boring — and what kid wants that!?
That’s why each year, Dads4Kids holds a Dads and Kids Fun Camp on the beautiful South Coast of New South Wales. My girls and I look forward to it, and it’s good to get away from screens and the sometimes sameness of everyday life. This year’s camp is coming up soon on 3-4 November 2023, and Craig Shipway, a great Dads4Kids friend and father of 6, is helping organise it. Save the date, and please contact Craig on 0418 241 457 or via email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
As another great Dads4Kids friend, Greg Keys, wisely points out towards the end of the video:
I would encourage fathers to take their kids camping. Don’t hesitate! Go and spend some quality time with your kids! That investment of time is really going to pay dividends later on in our lives as fathers.
Wise words from a wise man.
If you’re near the NSW South Coast, plan to be at the Dads and Kids Fun Camp 3-4 November 2023 – More details coming soon! If you can’t be there, plan your own adventure. Remember, it doesn’t need to be elaborate or expensive – if you can, make those memories with your kids. As Greg says in the Dads4Kids video, that investment of time is really going to pay dividends later on in our lives as fathers.
Yours for adventure,