On Beach Tanning in Southern Europe

27 Aug

Guest Author: Stuart Elliott (He doesn’t like the word ‘Blogger’.)

The golden rule of Euro sun worshippers is, whatever you do, never ever wear a hat, it might block the golden rays from your face and neck.

Lesser rules include:

one piece swim suits are strictly verbotten, the more exposed flesh the better;

sun block is for wimps, like Australians;

coconut oil is the preferred elixir as it spreads and seals in the golden tan;

ensure the body is gradually rotated in the horizontal plain, taking into account the trajectory of the sun so as to bronze evenly;

don’t forget to position yourself in the vertical plain too (otherwise known as standing) to ensure an equal tan on the scalp and shoulders – very important if you are bald or have scars from previously removed basal cell carcinomas;

a recommended vertical position is standing knee deep in the sea with legs akimbo as the water keeps the core temperature down enabling you to tolerate the heat longer;

finally, take care to lie perfectly flat as failure to do so results in white lines in stomach folds.

Ladies, if you can’t really afford the beach holiday skimp on the bikini – after all who needs a top; especially if you are buxsom and German. Of course in reality it is only the Germans who can afford both parts of the bikini but oddly they only seem to use the top bit for swimming.

The preferred form of transport to get to the giant outdoor tanning salon, aka beach, is a scooter. Why bother with a metal box when you can tan your scalp, legs, arms and torso on a scooter with bald tyres and no helmet. Gravel rash is a nuisance because you have to start the tanning all over again and your friends back home may not notice you have been on an expensive holiday somewhere exotic, but then accidents only happen to other people so that’s okay.

Never get to the beach before 10.30am, the sun isn’t strong enough.

The preferred lunch time drink is sparkling water with ice and lemon – prego. Now this may seem surprising but tanning is serious business and if you doze off after one too many Rose de Provence you may end up with an uneven tan or even worse have to cover up the offending red flesh the next day.

When the sun has finally swung over the yard arm, whatever that means, and you can admire your glowing (soon to be wrinkled) skin in the privacy of your own 2 x 2 metre bathroom suite, don’t forget to paint your nails and lips a kind of white before you go out to enhance the contrast with your newly bronzed skin.

Mock these sun worshippers we do, but bit by bit, with not a lot else to occupy us on a remote Greek island, and despite our hourly application of SPF 50 block, sitting under beach and pool umbrellas and having more hats than we do underwear, we are several skin tones darker. But as the days shorten and our migration to the southern hemisphere beckons we may have to borrow some of that white paint – sun tans in the ‘land downunder’ are seriously uncool!

Footnote from Sharon: I included the photo of Stuart receiving an oil massage on his sun bed to show that he has willingly adopted this hedonistic beach lifestyle. Note also the helmet free quad riding! Hypocrite!.










2 Responses to “On Beach Tanning in Southern Europe”

  1. lyndehankin@bigpond.com August 28, 2012 at 8:02 am #

    very very funny, will apply on arrival in Italy September 22nd….must remember to buy just a g string for the beach…. do you two have any major highlights that we should experience whilst driving around Italy for three weeks with Lu? I really want to do Cinque Terre and Peter wants to go back to Montepulciano, how long would it take to get to Sardinia from Spoleto for instance and how long should we stay? Dad sounds much better today, wants to go home tomo as the dr says it seems to just be a virus affecting him…there is a v bad gastro virus doing the rounds of sydney with people being put in hospital so hopefully this is all it is for him, Mum coping well so far..

    • Sharon Tickle August 28, 2012 at 1:57 pm #

      Thanks Lynde, Stuart is tickled pink that someone has the same sense of humour as him.

      I will email some suggestions for Italy. So glad you are heading over there.



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