Ever since I’ve immersed myself in New Zealand culture I wondered how the Kiwis do it – running around bare feet all the time (I’ve even seen bare feet kids in Wanaka winter). They seem to have invisible hard skin under their feet and a very different perception of cold. Since being out here in Piha I’ve been training my feet hard to fit into this lifestyle: first thing in the morning after I wake up is a run down to the beach, over grass with prickles, rocks, asphalt and finally black sand down to the sea to dip my feet in. And while I still wear a beanie against the cold wind I’ve discovered that once your feet go numb from the cold you’re perfectly fine running around bare feet. This week I even had company during my beach walks – Ruby stayed with me for a couple of days and the daily early-morning routine became even better (especially when she cuddled up at my feet and let me tuck my feet into her warm fur). I quite enjoyed having her for a while and reminded me of how much I want to have a dog one day.