Friday, June 01, 2007

Tanning Locals

For a number of days now, a group of my younger friends – yes they’re 20 years younger than me – have been planning a tanning session at a local, women's-only beach. And true to nature, I tried to dissuade them from this foolish activity, but only half-heartedly. However, they just didn’t want to listen. No amount of evidence of the negative effects of direct sunlight on the skin could change their minds. Even the words “melanoma” and “cancer” had absolutely no effect on their plans.

Their claim was that they were going to spend only a couple of hours, and their defense was, and I quote "it’s not like we do it every week or even every month!" I pointed out that skin cancer is not very picky when it comes to choosing its victims. And anyway, did they really want to burn their skin to the consistency of leather? It looks awful when you get old and it isn’t reversible! Again, their claim was that they were only doing it this once. Fine, whatever!

And so, on Friday, June 1st, officially the first day of the Summer, they executed their "brilliant" plan. I was very curious about it, so I dropped by to see how things were going. I found them huddled under a beach umbrella, dressed in assorted beach clothing, a lot of their skin exposed, glistening with oil in the bright light of the day, but none of it under direct sunlight. They found the sun too hot, and the heat too stifling. So, they dragged two beach chairs and sat under the umbrella, chatting and whining about their hair being blown in all directions. I thought the whole thing hilarious! I called them “lunatics” and “wimps” in the same breath. But I loved their adorable determination to go through with the whole plan, despite the heat and the harsh sunlight. They say “only mad dogs and Englishmen go out in the mid-day sun”; but my friends must not have heard about this. For despite the fact that these girls come from a culture which has lived in the middle of the desert, under the harsh sun for most millenia; and we are by nature a nation which avoids the sun like the plague, these girls seem to have gotten tired of their “fair” skin (fair here being a very relative term, as we are not as fair as Europeans for instance, even the fairest of us), and were determined to “bronze” it. But at the rate they were going, I think it would take them about a year to finally change the color of their skin.

1 comment:

ko said...

and when fa6oom got home, she was trying to show off a non-existing tan!

fa6oom u idiot!!! under the umbrella?