Friday, 14 March 2014

New Zealand nudity: no worries

pumice stone from the sea.  thanks.  i needed that.

My morning beach walk is one of the only times that is just about me-- no dogs to monitor, no children to have an eyeball on or companion to converse with-- just me and the sea.

Today I was basking in the contrast of the our pre-cyclone swells and grouchy sky compared to yesterday's soft blues, shining sun and lulling sea. 

Frequently I finish with some time on the rocks in eyes-open-meditation.  

Yesterday a mantra came to me-- "I am open to receiving miracles." 

At once I thought back to the little girl, who grew up right in the middle of farmland USA,  after she first saw the sea and wished, "one day I would like to be able to see the sea every day . . ."  

There's your miracle-- me sitting on that rock contemplating miracles.

Today I sat in awe of nature.  Nothing profound.  

I got up to walk back, and far along the beach were two figures looking like their bare bottoms were shining based on the contrast of tan and pale.  

In typical form, the female looking entity grabbed what appeared to be a dressing gown (robe) and put it on-- all the while appearing to severely stare in my general direction.  The male derrière remained bent over until finally he rose, complete with severe stare, and gathered his things as well.  

Off they went.  Quickly.

I read a lot into those "stares."

You've just invaded our morning ritual.  The nerve.

What they don't understand is since moving to New Zealand, public nudity doesn't phase me.   At all. 

Now don't get me wrong, the thought of my own public nudity utterly appals me, but I'm absolutely cool with everyone else's.  

People of all ages peel out of their wetsuits, sometimes without as much as a glance around to see who they will be flashing.  Women change into swimming costumes (suits) on the beach with much less concern about the random flailing breast than I  could imagine.  

My husband, not one to be left behind, was changing in the parking lot at a beach recently when a lady and her daughter were walking by.  

"Turn around at least, man," I clipped.  

The lady laughed and said, "That's okay, we've seen it.  My husband did the same thing just a minute ago."

After all, it was my partners's British parents who I first saw change into their swimming costumes (I know American's, don't you just imagine some crazy swimsuit when you use the word costume?  And maybe a red squeaking nose as a "costume" accessory?) on a beach, sitting on a chair with a towel draping over them (sort of).  

Those uninhibited Europeans.  Gotta love them.

Although I haven't gone to a full-out nude beach in New Zealand, seeing someone lying on the beach butt-naked (as my kids used to say), would no longer phase me.  As long as there was nothing questionable happening with said butt-nakedness, that is.

The most sweet display this year was at a crowded (by New Zealand's standards) beach when a clothed grandmother had six or seven little ones, feet prancing, naked bottoms jiggling, and walked them down to the water, all holding hands in a long row.  Ages probably ranged from two to seven.  

What a picture.  

Innocence.  Freedom.  Absolute glee.  

And the general public consensus?

No worries.

Telepathically, that was what I was trying to communicate to the scrambling morning bathers, because, if you've seen one bare bum on the New Zealand's beaches . . .

Nude morning swim?  

Go for it.

No worries, mates.

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