On paleness and the desire to tan.

It is that time of year again. The magazines are throwing out as many free summer goodies as they can possibly afford. Shorts and sandals galore. Paperbacks stacked by the garden loungers (unless you have a dog that is inclined to biting and hunting inanimate objects like mine, then I highly recommend stacking at a height). Not to forget the endless number of burnt faces, shoulders, backs and tops of feet.

We Brits spend all year praying to have a good summer: hot weather so we can go outside and roast ourselves in the sun, glass of Pimm’s in the hand while we lovingly burn meat on the barbecue. Yet when it finally arrives nobody seems to be able to do anything other than moan about the weather. “Oh it is so unbelievably hot today!” “I can’t cope with this weather” “I am wearing way too many clothes for this weather”

When a glass is just not big enough.

When a glass is just not big enough.

Make your minds up! I am far from exempt from this. I find myself struggling to pick clothes out of my wardrobe that will do all the things I require of them: leave enough skin on show so as to allow for maximum pre-holiday tannage, cover me up enough so I don’t burn/get sun stroke and also feel comfortable and cool enough simultaneously. Today for example I chose a pair of denim shorts and a baggy white cotton blouse. Actually not a bad decision for a heat wave day.

Perhaps it is just me. For those sun worshippers out there who can happily bask in the sun all day and night I am sure you are in your element. But then I also assume that when you look at the sun you don’t burn. Being a pale skinned being I am doomed to the curse of the burn-white cycle. I sit in the sun, I burn, the burn fades and returns back to its original shade of luminous whiteness. My skin never seems to remember how to progress. Wearing white does help to create the illusion that I have a slight tan.

Perhaps this year is the year. I have been off from uni for a few months now, reading in the sun, working in the sun, I have managed a healthy glow. My body is acclimatising to the heat slowly, but surely. Two weeks in Skiathos in 9 days time may allow for an actual tan. Could that be possible? Has my time finally arrived? I guess considering a couple of years ago I made it no further than I am now despite having 2 weeks in India, 10 days in France and 1 week in Cornwall maybe I shouldn’t get my hopes up.

I guess I should be used to paleness now. I have embraced it wholeheartedly, I really have. I am not in denial. I know that the chances of me walking down the streets with a perfectly even golden tan are slimmer than my chance of winning the lottery. But hope is always on the agenda. So for those of you pale and desperate for warm weather but unable to cope with it I hear you. Hang in there and I wouldn’t worry because winter is coming.

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2 thoughts on “On paleness and the desire to tan.

  1. And in India, those beautiful women are using skin lightening cream and cover themselves up with long gloves to avoid more sun! I guess it is the human condition to want something we don’t have!! Namaste. . .. Anne talesalongtheway.com

    • Yes that is a great point! I hadn’t even considered the Caste system and the impacts of lightening rather than tanning. Would definitely have been an interesting counter point, thanks for commenting 🙂

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