Since I turned sixteen years old, I wanted to get a tattoo on my right arm. A Phoenix bird. I was always drawn to fire and anything that had anything to do with it. In my childhood, all of my drawings and paintings were portraying the majestic bird that finds its beginning and its end in the flames. I loved this legend from the first time I had it read to me.
I remember being at my grandparent's house with my grandfather. It was a fishing trip we took, just the two of us. I think I was about six years old. It was a hot summer day and we just had lunch after being on the water with the boat the whole morning. Grandpa had caught two fish that he had cooked for lunch.
After we ate we were staying under a Summer garden shelters longueuil, getting ready for an afternoon nap. I was swinging in the hammock, while he was on his rocking chair. He asked me if I knew the legend of the Phoenix bird? I replied that I didn’t. Then he went inside the house for a minute or two and returned with an old book in his hands. It was a thick long book, called Greek and Roman Legends.
It was for the first time that I was seeing that book, despite the fact that I had been to the house plenty of times. Grandpa said it was his favorite book and that him and my dad loved it. Once he read my the story of the legendary bird, I loved it as well.
As a matter of fact, I couldn’t get it out of my head. It was all I was thinking about for a long time. I became so obsessed with this story, that when I learnt how to read, I looked for it at all the libraries around, trying to find the same very edition I first saw at the house.
Unfortunately there was an accident at the house and the house caught on fire. Half of the things got destroyed by the flames. I found it ironic that the book did not make it through the flames. My grandpa got burnt on both his arms, while he was trying to put off the fire. If he would have waited for the firefighters, everything would have been burnt. His treatment was covered by his work insurance. Once the wounds healed, he decided to have a tattoo done, in order to cover the scars. Guess what he chose? A Phoenix bird!