My aunt used to have a jar of black sand in her china cabinet. As a kid, whenever we would visit her house, I'd imagine how she had gotten such a thing as black sand. Surely she had journeyed to a island and received it as a token of friendship from a jungle person. Or maybe she knew someone really rich who flew her in a jet to the base of a volcano to collect it. Whatever it was, "Your uncle and I bought it in Hawaii" was not an unacceptable explanation. Thinking of her, I made a point to see the White Sands National Monument on a recent trip to New Mexico. This field of white sand dunes is surrounded by mountains and affords the most beautiful sunsets. My crusty little point and shoot could not do it justice!