Thursday 23rd July 2009 It was a hot one today, good job we were going to be in cool water a lot! I was up by 6.30 getting the refillable mugs filled and waking the boys by 7. As we didn't need any breakfast we were in the taxi by 7.30 and on our way. It cost $27.50 plus tip. There were some people already checking in by the time we arrived so joined the queue, would like to have taken some pictures of the entrance but was too scared of having a late swim. We ended up getting an 8.40am swim, bit too early really - no pleasing some folks is there. We had to leave breakfast and go and find the lockers and sort the wet suits/vests out. Every time we passed a merchandise stall Ashley picked up this dolphin that made a dolphin noise when you pressed his fin, I think he would have liked me to say 'do you want it?' I wasn't going to, we have enough soft toys at home and they all end up in the cupboard except 2 favourites who were sitting on the bed at the resort (they are both well travelled toys!) Applying the sun cream they gave us, it was impossible to rub in! Right here goes - the photo that just has to be included! We were lucky to get Ashley to do this, he dipped his toes in the water and declared it too cold and he wasn't going to do it! Can you imagine how we felt, months of planning and anticipation of all the things we had planned and we get a wimpish 'its too cold'. I'm sure those of you with special needs children have experienced similar moments and to be honest my patience went out of the window. I try hard to understand him but sometimes I just don't get it so he had one of my looks and in a gentle but demanding voice to him in no uncertain terms 'GET IN NOW'. He did but he wasn't happy, Sarah had to encourage him also. I did what I usually do at times like this and left him to it, its the best way with him, someone else asking him usually works as he likes to please people. This was Capricorn who I had heard of from previous trip reports, we were told he's 40 years old, 500-600lbs in weight and his grandson was in the pool also that day. Kyle and Sarah were the trainers with us. He was just so gentle and obedient, he was gorgeous but he didn't half wack us with his tail when he swam past, we quickly learned to just step back a little when we did go past us and reach out to him. We were taken to view the pics and placed our order for the ultimate package $233 for the dvd, cd, 7 - 7x5 pics and 2 - 6x4 pics, keyring and photo album. Eventually went and got breakfast, it was 10am now, they were due to stop serving it at 10.30 so didn't mess about. Went and found a spot to sit, thankfully in the shade, had a quick swim in the tropical reef, didn't quite know what to make of this at first. I've never snorkelled before and when I saw how deep the water was kind of panicked a bit until I told myself to stop being pathetic and get on with it. I eventually made it all the way around twice stopping occasionally on the reef bits! Went back to our seats which were right next to the tropical reef and had a drink and a lollipop. We went into the Ray Pool next, we did the ray feeding as well. Lunch time and more food. The day had been wonderful so far but unfortunately things changed. There was a lot of activity going on to the side of us about 30feet away, the lifeguard ran past with a board and as I had to pass the place to get to the loo I noticed a little girl crying and the lifeguards doing CPR on someone. Sounds like I stood staring I didn't I went passed quickly and returned to my family and got them into the water out of the way but as the staff were encouraging people to evacuate the area and get into the water to clear the way for the paramedics it didn't look good. When the emergency had been cleared we were allowed back to our chairs and went into the aviary just behind us but the event was playing on my mind, thinking what the little girl must be going through. It didn't help that no sooner had we gone into the aviary and feeding the birds that about 3 helicopters started hovering overhead. That really spoilt the tranquility of the place and made you realise that something awful must have happened. By this time it was about 4, I wanted to see a dolphin interaction from the sidelines as it were to get some photos that we couldn't get earlier during our swim. There was a disabled lad doing a swim and bless him, he couldn't keep hold of the dolphin, he must have tried 5 or 6 times before the trainer helped him keep hold just to start off before letting him go on his own, I nearly lost it here, just to see the look on his face when he did it was worth the admission fee itself, still makes me fill up now. I know some people don't like animals in captivity but boy do they do a wonderful job in making some people's lives that little bit special for a while. Went to pick up our photos and made our way out to get a taxi home, the driver told us it was a 70 year old lady who had passed away due to a heart attack. Awful thing to happen especially when you were visiting such a wonderful place for a lovely day out. We were back at the resort by 5.45pm had a coffee in our room and sat on the balcony watching the animals on the savannah. Later in the evening Ashley asked to go to the arcade while we sat around the pool with a drink. More AKL pictures - we had been here a few nights now and hadn't noticed the animals on the net curtains until tonight! Lamp shade in the corridor. The wallpaper in the bathroom area of our room.