October 10, 2021

Pillar 3: Memories

Pillar 3: Memories

Written by Sam Buchwald

An innate ability and fundamental part of human nature is the ability to store pockets of information in our brains, with the instant recollection at any point in time. Memories. This pocket of information is stored in the hippocampus for short term memories, and gradually makes it’s way over to the neocortex in order to be stored as a long-term memory. For some people, they must actively be present in the moment in order to fully store the information. Whereas, others may have the unique ability to visually remember the moments. Inevitably with age, people may struggle with this process, both storing the information and recalling it.

Often, memories can be stimulated by our five senses; sight, touch, hearing, taste and smell. These may bring up unwanted emotions, anger, grief, regret - but others bring up happiness, love or freedom. It is absolutely incredible what a memory can hold.

We are fortunate enough to live in the digital era, and the advances in technology have allowed for these memories to be captured and stored forever in the form of photos or videos. However, some may argue that being behind a lens takes away from capturing and storing the true memory in your brain, which in return, limits the brain’s ability to recall it in it’s full form. 

As you may be aware, I am an avid photographer and videographer and absolutely love capturing these special moments. But, as hard as it is to resist the urge of snapping away, I do try and take the time to leave my camera by my side, and be present in the moment.

As such, today’s blog is going to be a little bit different. To expand upon our 3rd core pillar, memories, I have written a short extract below of five of my favourite moments throughout the past year. Although I did happen to capture these memories on technology, the sublime ability to associate moments with senses, accompanied by the photos and film I captured, has allowed me to fully recall, relive and recite these special memories with the greatest amount of detail. 


Dazed, I woke up in my rooftop tent to the sound of Zac banging the roof of my car.  “Dude, look at the sky, it’s going to be a banger sunrise” he said. I quickly checked the time on my phone, it was 5.30am. Rubbing the sleep from my eyes, I poke my head outside, and he was right. On the horizon, you could see these patches of red emerging between the high dark clouds, it was going to be stunning. In no time, we grabbed our cameras from the car, walked over to the grass patch looking out across the ocean beside the parking lot and started to watch the colours dance and come to life in the sky. 

It was unreal. Could even call it surreal. I had never seen a sky so beautiful. So full of colour. The reds, oranges and pinks reflected upon the ocean as the sun started to rise. It was like someone had gone and painted their dream sunset. 

I will never forget this sunrise, and only living in the moment could truly describe how incredible it was. You couldn’t predict such a banger.

Rich results on Google’s SERP when searching for ‘Catherine Hill Bay'
Catherine Hill Bay Sunrise


My entire body was tingling from the icy cold water. My feet and hands were numb. Zac, Brooke, Sam S, and I had submerged ourselves in the infinity pool at the top of a flowing waterfall to push our limits and undertake a Wim Hof breathing session. We closed our eyes, started to relax. I could feel the touch of Sam's shoulder against mine. The rising and falling of his breath in unison.

In… Out… In… Out… until the holding of the breath.

In… Out… In… Out… until the holding of the breath.

In… Out… In… Out… until the holding of the breath.

Slowly, but surely, the cold bite feeling on my body started to dissipate. Maybe it was because my mind has been focusing elsewhere, on breathing, or the sound of water gushing down the waterfall. I had become lost in paradise. 

We heard the last bell of the Wim Hof session, and we opened our eyes to the serenity of nature. Sitting next to my 3 close friends, we all emerge from the water in total blissfulness. 


Everyone was yelling in awe as we ran to the view point. 

“Oh my god!” 

“Absolutely incredible” 

These were just two of the actual verbalised words in between the “whaaa’s!” and “ahhh’s!”.

This short moment of running and screaming I will never forget. 

It began as we walked back to our cars after having some fun jumping into a waterfall. The group wanted to scout out a location for sunset before heading back to our campsite in Port Macquarie. However, we were pushing it for time already, the winter sunsets were early and it was already 4.30pm. This didn’t stop us from quickly jumping onto google maps and pinpointing a so-called “lookout” that was 15mins drive away.

Maps lied. 15 mins!? Hah. 

The tarmac road shortly became gravel, which shortly turned into an off road 4WD track. Luckily, I had my trusty Jackaroo (Jackie) so I put her in 4WD and zipped ahead. But Leesh’s all wheel RAV-4 wasn’t as lucky. When we arrived at a steep incline, she made it halfway up and then started to slide down, even with her brakes on. Fortunately, we managed to reverse it down to a flat and everyone in Leesh’s car jumped into Jackie. 

It was now nearing golden hour, and we could feel we were close. We kept climbing the track until a couple of stairs appeared in the distance. We pull over. Jump out. Start running up the stairs.

We had made it just in time.

Everyone was yelling in awe of the sun setting over the panoramic view of the lush valley below. 


Despite having fond memories of tasting incredible food around the world, one distinct taste that comes to mind whenever someone mentions if I can recall a memory from a taste is the day I coughed up blood in the Blue Mountains. Adventuring and undertaking thrill seeking, adrenaline pumping activities does come with risks - it’s not all sunshine, lollipops and rainbows I'm afraid to say. 

After having a brisk night sleep in the Blueys, we wanted to venture and explore Dargan Dam. These dams were renowned for their jump rocks and rope swings. After taking a couple of wrong turns we eventually found our way down to the dam. Damn, the water was cold!! 

Knowing how injury prone I am, I stayed clear of flipping off the jump rocks, and I had also just lost Zac’s new GoPro Hero 9 in the water trying to capture his flips. Wasn’t the best of mornings. With the adrenaline pumping in everyone’s blood, we make our way over to the 10 meter rope swing. I was super hesitant about it, but ended up doing a successful backflip. Zac and Sam S were throwing double backies, so I thought I could surely land one too.

In the lead up to swinging, I hesitated and did a little weird step, and then let go of the swing a bit early. I tucked into a ball, closed my eyes, and went for it. This wasn’t the best idea… I made it around two times in the air but on the third rotation landed on my upper back and neck area. Instantly, tingles struck my entire body. I became lost underwater. Panic arised. My mind ticked over one thousand times… “Can I feel my body?”, “Where is the surface”, “Am I alive?”

I gasped for air when I surfaced, shortly followed by coughing up blood. Relieved to still be in one piece, I floated on my back to try and rest and regain my breath, whilst the crew ran down over to the nearest rock. Still coughing up blood, they helped me out of the water, and were extremely thankful that I wasn’t badly injured. 

That metallic, dark taste of blood is one of the memories I look back on and am ever so thankful that nothing worse happened. 

Fail GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY
Dargan Dams Triple Backflip


Can you remember the last time you showered after being around a campfire? The smoke smell poreing out of you (pun intended). It makes you reminisce on the memories made around the fire hey?. 

This is a smell I love, it brings up so many amazing memories that have been made around a campfire. One of my favourite associations with that smell is when we were all camping in a family’s backyard that we had only just met. They were incredibly kind to us and before they went away for the weekend, they let us pitch our tents and hammocks out back. By the time we got back to light a bonfire at night, they had collected old trees and wood for us to use. We danced, sang to music, fire twirled, drank and had an absolute ball. We honestly had the best weekend there and we couldn’t thank them enough. 


What would your memories be? 

© 2021 Live To Adventure
The Live To Co Pty Ltd
ABN: 37649809585
linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram