We started our first full day here with breakfast in the room; toast, fruit and tea. Supermarket bread is nothing like real bread from my local baker! Not appealing at all.
The sky was grey and it was drizzling and cool so we went out for a long walk on the beach. We went only two kilometres in just over an hour because that included looking at shells, smooth pretty rocks and washed up jellyfish, and playing on the sand.
It was all lovely except for the short period of rain driving straight into my face. Walking on sand is hard work, even if you choose the firmer section near the water. The muscles really felt it during the walk - maybe stabilising me? - but afterwards it was my calves that protested. A good start to the day. By the time we got back the sky had partly cleared, showing patches of blue, and it had warmed up, so we went for a swim in the pool.
We drove to the nearest town, Forster, which is about 15 mins away, for lunch (through more rain which stopped when we got there, such variable weather!) I had grilled fish even though I much prefer crumbed or battered. And chips. I'm trying! A great location right next to the waster. Forster/Tuncurry are towns on opposite sides of a kilometre-long bridge where Wallis lake meets the sea. The water is really shallow under the bridge, with lots of exposed sandbars populated by pelicans and seagulls, and we have seen dolphins in the crystal green water. Beautiful.
We went back to our cabin to stay out of the sun during the hottest part of the day. The clouds had all disappeared and it had turned into a lovely day. Tim napped, the kids watched TV, and I worked on writing mum's eulogy and returning some phone calls. It's so relaxing here that I was able to write as a celebration of mum rather than getting all maudlin. I'm glad we're here.
I haven't been using my meditation app. I tried a few days ago, when still at home, but I was too distracted. I'll go back to it. I think it's something you need to practice in easier circumstances rather than try to dive in when you really need it. Like trying to run a marathon without training for it.
In the afternoon we had an ice cream then tried out the second pool - which is rather boring and standard and we were the only ones there. The water was really cold, only the kids went in. Tim broke a chair! I was sitting on the same kind and it kept settling lower under me, very disconcerting when it would suddenly shift. Tim weighs less than me so I consider myself very lucky mine didn't break. Tim is not heavy at all so any adult weight was obviously too much - terrible chairs.
We went back to the good pool, which is much more interesting with a bridge and a sloping shallow area and much more interesting funky shape, and all the other guests were there. And big comfy non-breaking lounge chairs! And warmer water. Last swim of the day.
We tried really hard to not get sunburnt. Tim is fine, Aiden a little pink in the face and I am a bit pink on my shoulders and chin. Poor lily-white Jasmine got quite burnt on her face and the top of her chest and back. Even with hats and swim shirts and lots of sunscreen, she is just not a skin type that can spend hours in the sun with impunity. It is a tricky balance, we are here to spend time in the pool or on the beach. We could sit inside watching TV, much cheaper, at home. We'll just be as careful as we can.
We went back to Forster for dinner and had yummy Mexican. And I had two thirds of a chocolate mousse for dessert.
The combination of sun and fresh air and exercise and big dinners mean I can hardly keep my eyes open after dinner.