Rapahoe Wednesday

When she was inside me, I knew she would be my water baby. Conceived on the wild west coast within sound of the ocean, born on our lounge floor as the waves washed up just a few hundred metres away.

Today we knew there was more to life than cleaning. There had to be a better use of time than doing more dishes, vacuuming. That was so yesterday.

We drove out to Rapahoe beach with a pile of plastic bags in my pocket. Perfect sunshine, warmer than town had been in the morning. It has been quite calm weather here of late and the seaweed haul was light. Brighid carried the bags, one for rubbish and the other for seaweed. She added a few sticks to the seaweed bag, sure they were also of use and relevance. We wandered along in the perfect sunshine, scarcely credulous that this was mid-winter. I gasped at the tiny perfection of her tiny footprints and we inspected the shape of a dog print from earlier in the day. No one around us, no where for H1N1 to be an issue. We talked about stones and sticks, logs and waves. We chanted "up hill up hill up hill" as we climbed over the ridge back to the car.

This is a life I value. This is my child so precious. Now we have something special to do together as often as possible, to abandon the everyday jobs for the sunshine on our backs as we walk the beach, especially the particular beauty of Rapahoe. Fionn and I had our precious escapades when he was two - walking to a bus stop or to the tube station and jumping on board a different bus each time for a new adventure in London.

As I write, it is now Thursday. Word came through yesterday morning that many of the people at my work have had recent exposure to a person with confirmed H1N1 flu. My boy is under par, generally unwell, and I have a sore throat. I've cancelled work for today and kept the children home with me. The clouds are heavy outside - I've dared them to break before my nappy wash is at least half way dry. I have the fire going and appreciate that I am not an illness panicker. I'm pretty grateful for our choice to buy a tv/dvd player earlier this year. We have no signal for regular tv (on purpose), but Margaret Mahy, Blues Clues and Thomas the Tank Engine are making resting by the fire more pleasurable for my kids.

I've been sneaking more gardening in each day, pulling weeds, using the last of the broccoli and feeding the leaves to the chooks, pulling the huge red russian kale which we never seem to eat. Looks magnificent but it is using nutrients which should rightly go to the plants which we will eat. My lunar guide says today is a rest day. We can do that.

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