This trip to the aquarium might have been even better because we knew just what to look at this time. We watched the divers again, only this time there were three and not two. One talked on the microphone while two fended off sharks.
We also got to see the otters this time, which were absent last time. They did a feeding demonstration by placing pieces of fish and other things around their enclosure and then letting them in, and the otters pretty energetically tracked down the food.
Like the day before one of the kids' favorite activities was climbing on the large sculptures and posing for pictures.
We had lunch and quiet time, and, you guessed it, another trip down to the beach. We had actually talked about going to Beaufort and looking at boats, but the kids have tremendous fun at the water's edge, so we let them have their way.
The kids really love the beach, and it's fun watching their pure joy in the sand and the waves. They just jump and dance and run around and have a great time, until hypothermia sets in and it's all done for the day.
Being an old fogey, my joy at the beach doesn't quite match theirs. It was a little too cold for me, but I resolutely put on my swimsuit and went out there anyway (to the beach, not in the water. I'm not crazy) because it was worth it just to share the moment with them and to be part of it. I can warm up and scrape the sand off later.
After we got back, Thomas got sick! We weren't totally sure whether it was too much touch tank and not enough hand-washing or some other thing, but he was an unhappy camper. He threw up at least twice and had to be put to bed. Rachel and Isaac dithered about whether to stay another night, but he was sound enough asleep that it didn't seem to matter, so they went home, leaving after Rachel's very nice tortellini dinner.
It was very sad coming back up to the condo after seeing them off. Elizabeth had left a partially finished drawing, some stencils, and crayons behind. We had brought her favorite book, Richard Scarry's "Busy Busy World", and there it was, sitting on the coffee table, with nobody to read it to. It was nice to have the peace and quiet, but I really missed the kids and their simple joy in everyday things. Clearly we need to do this again, and soon.