The flight landed in Auckland, NZ, and, after a scenic Airport Express bus ride through town, we caught a ferry to Whangaparaoa. Our host, Barbara, warmly greeted us at the harbor and drove us to our new home-away-from-home for the next three weeks. A proteus blossom greeted us as we got out of the car.
The sea sparkled a turquoise blue outside our window and beckoned us down. We grabbed a piece of fruit from the welcoming basket Barbara had left for us and we headed down to Little Manly Beach.
Low tide revealed a vast rocky expanse, waiting for us to explore. We were about to encounter a series of little mysteries, seeing new things that we couldn’t name.
Small shells and a variety of pitted stones were caught in the crevices between the massive black rocks. We searched for a few treasures and took only a photo as a keepsake.
A plant fanned out in the tidal pool. Later we saw many more in the shallow water. They looked like stars scattered across the sky.
We admired the scattered barnacle artistry on stone. (At least we think those are barnacles.)
High cliffs bound the rocky shore at the back, impassable at high tide. Large trees perched precariously at the top holding on for dear life with roots draping down. The cliffs revealed their age with many layers of compacted sand and rocks. The multi-colored layering made a nice photograph.
The mysteries continued with two little sea creatures less than an 1” long barely submerged in a tidal pool. What were they?
We saw many new things on the beach with no idea what they were – so we made a plan. Thunderstorms are on their way and the public library is not far away. We’ll pay a visit to the library, look at some books, try to figure out what we saw, and learn about other new things we might see.