Our third day in Australia, we were left to our own devices again, and decided to spend the day at the beach. It was Aleeya’s 10th birthday, so we thought we’d catch the tram out in the morning and spend the day hanging around on the beach and doing a bit of shopping.
She had a party before we left, which is when she got most of her presents, but still the excitement over the new version of tamagotchi had not quite warn off. We left around 10.30am and got into the beach about 15 minutes later. It was a stunning day, and not too hot – due to the fact it was morning, so we’d all forgotten about the dangers of the sun, and had no sunscreen. You know where I’m going with this, right?
When we arrived, there were three people setting up camel rides. We’ve done the elephant ride, so we have to do the camel rides too right? The girls were slightly nervous, but once he’d stood up, they were fine. Camels are so weird, they tuck their legs under them at the most bizarre angle. Don’t you totally love the big bearded man? He was so awesome. I think he was possibly part Aboriginal, and his accent was so very strong. He walked them around the park and then stood there with them so we could take a million and one photos, which must be done, you know.
So they rode their camel and then we headed down to the beach. The water was amazing, it was so beautiful and clear and relatively warm. Although, I forgot my swimming gear. I KNOW! No sunscreen, no swimming togs – in Australia. I really am a bit stupid. I did go looking, but all they had were string bikinis and you know, if I were still 18, I might have considered it, but I’m so not and it was totally not happening. Anyway, I sprawled my white little body out on the sand, and the kids buried my feet, then they buried Aleeya up to her neck before they went swimming.
And I, smart girl that I am, lay in the sun, determined that if I was going to have spent 10 days in Australia, I was going to have a tan to show for it. What I forgot, was that I’ve been living in Christchurch for almost 13 years and that, while we do get the sun here, most days are overcast and cool. Summer lasts a month and not a month in a row, but a month of sun interspersed with rain and hail and wind and cloud spanning the 3 months that is supposed to be our summer.
So, my poor white body was delighted by this sudden attack of sun and surprised me, greatly, but burninating to a crisp. A CRISP internet. I woke up the next day and I was almost blistered. THAT is how bad it was. I was scarlet and trying to put clothes on left me hyperventilating in pain. I had red lines everywhere, I hurt to the point that the slightest touch almost had me in tears. I couldn’t lift my arms, or wear a bra. I ended up a couple of days later buying a strapless one, just so that I didn’t have to feel the agony of straps on my shoulders. It was – awful.
Look at me. Without a care in the world. Having no idea at all just how terribly I was burninating. We spent four hours there. We had lunch, we bought Aleeya some really cute emo girl clothes, we walked from one end of the beach to the other, and then we went back to our apartment, where we realised, just how burned I truly was.
With the wedding the very next day, you can, I’m sure, imagine my complete horror.
It’s such a hard life you know. All that sun and sea and lack of working really wears a man out. Course, he -is- getting old.