Lava beaches

At the first sight of sea we had to stop and hit the beach. Life's a beach and all that. We are in volcano  country so we told the kids we were going to see sand made of lava. But no, it no longer burnt. They loved the black sand and soon set up a shop to sell lava sand. Esther started doing yoga routines and I whipped out the camera. To each his own. I am a man of the world (nudge nudge, wink wink, say no more) so I have been on a few volcanic beaches before but have never seen one with such fine sand. It is a bit like soot dust, with a psychedelic iridescence to boot.

A bit further down the road we stopped to look at the Three Sisters, some rock columns by the sea. They are actually the Two-and-a-quarter Sisters now since one toppled over about ten years ago (though it looks like erosion on the cliff is in the midst of creating a new sister). There are a few more rocks accompanying them, a few with stone arches. We were lucky with the tide so everything was laid out perfectly for us. Again we had the beach virtually to ourselves. More black sand castles and splashing around and back to the camper before the tide came up to trap us.

There are more stops off the highway but we needed to fill up the camper on water so we headed into New Plymouth. Had a bit of trouble at the petrol station, the tap and our hose couldn't see eye to eye. In the end we managed it, with a bit of help from the attendant, a passing plumber, and a visit to a shop to get a hose clamp. This camper is showing a few flaws. Apart from the hose leaking and the electric heater making a racket it looks like the gas water heater doesn't work (had to heat water in pans to do Lucas' hair yesterday) and the sink doesn't drain. Got some Mr Muscle on the way out of town but now it's well and truly blocked. Will have to call the company tomorrow.

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