Today we went to the beach. We did other things too, but we Went To The Beach. We met my cousin and her family there, and it was glorious. We parked my mother in their half tent with my cousin's partner (who I am embarrassed to admit I taught!!! OMG I was 22 and he was 17!), the children all shot into the water, five colourful kids on boogie boards, and my cousin and I had a dip in the sea and I can't begin to tell you how beautiful it was. The sea was cold at first but soon felt warm, the waves were fairly strong, sometimes over my head but then melting into nothing moments later. The sky blue, the islands bordering the beach picturesque, covered in native bush, rocky outcrops from the white curve of sand. We just sighed with wonder at the beauty of it all. We swam with little jellyfish around but they didn't seem to want to bother us. Honestly, it was so worth being there today. And it was incredibly hot. Hot, salty, sandy bodies piled into the car at the end of the afternoon, and it was a day worth every minute. The beach looks like this http://www.newzealand.com/travel/library/t83211_3.jpg we were near the top end of this pic, just past the little rocky outcrop. Tomorrow, back down to Rotorua for the afternoon and the luge (mini movie here) http://www.skylineskyrides.co.nz/rotorua/ (last time I promised we'd do it, Asher had a broken collar-bone) and a catch-up with some great friends... have a good day, my friends. I'm going to bed now.