We drove into Piha Beach's domain expecting a serene beach day where the adults could repose in half-tranquilized states without worry of losing children or sacrificing them to the ocean. We had strapped the back floatie on the two-year-old before we left the house fifty minutes before. The parents' voices were husky with yearning when they told me that Piha should be deserted and, if we wore sunglasses, each of us might be able to plunder a two-minute nap. The car reverberated, intoxicated with exultant expectations. When we were a five minute drive from Piha, cars slowed to the pace of my standard drunken and incapacitated crawl. People channeled through the cars. Drivers sat, immobile, wishing they had a personal Maverick Jet.
A Surf Life Saving boating competition accounted for the masses. A quarter of the population in a half hour vicinity arrived to observe lifeguards in boats. Note to self: in person, lifeguards do not resemble those in television shows.
We nestled our towels, strollers, ice chests, diaper bags, and human-sized blow-up dolphin in between chain-smoking teenagers bumping rap and an elderly couple who looked like they used to be the chain-smoking tatted teenagers.
Two of the five kids boogie-boarded, one sat in a rivulet depositing child urine into the ocean, one ate sand, and the mom breast-fed the four-month-old. As the mom was telling me that the fifth child was an oops, the four-year-old gyrated into a digging dog position, bent over with feet spread. While I thought that her posture was likely demonstrated in a book called 365 Sex Positions - 355 Require You to be an Acrobat - she fired a sand fusillade onto the nursing mother and baby. A sheet of sand swooped into their eyes, mouths, hair, and onto the mom's wet nipple.
Five minutes and screaming later, the four-year-old dug a hole behind us. We head-swiveled to witness her standing over the hole and pissing in it. The judgmental - everyone over the age of thirty-five - looked at me and the mother with horror. I psychically communicated to the mom that I found this acceptable.
Most of Piha Beach was reserved for the boating contest. A section of the beach had been sequestered for spectators and swimmers. Ropes dictated where we could go. The Surf Life Saving boating race evolved into a Terrorize Swimmers competition. The lifeguards manning two of the boats maneuvered them directly towards the swimming sector of the beach. Bodies dove and jumped in all directions as the ten-passenger boats dynamite-erupted into the multitudes.
One of the casualties: the seven-year-old daughter. As she walked out of the water to escape the danger the lifeguards were breeding, one of the boats pummeled her in the frontal lobe.