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Are You Ready?

August 5, 2008

Something I have thought about for over 15 years became a reality for me yesterday. I visited a naturist park. I did not only visit, but Kelly and I disrobed and stayed nude for almost four hours.

You might be thinking, “why on earth would you want to do this?” And I’m afraid I can’t answer that. I don’t know completely why. I know the seed was planted many years ago by a co-worker at the phone company.

Bob was a nudist. He talked about it very matter of factly at a party once. Unlike others that seemed to recoil and think it was kind of creepy, I was fascinated. I wanted to know all about it, and I’ve been researching it off and on for many years now. What it’s all about, what it’s NOT about, and what are the “rules” to be a good nudist.

But I could not bring myself to go. The closest I came was driving by the front gate of a well designated place up near Niagara Falls. But as a single male, it just didn’t feel right to go.

In Kelly, I know that I have a loving trusting partner that I can share anything with. So when the thought crossed my mind again a few months back, I didn’t hesitate to ask her. “would you go with me?” Without even blinking, she replied “sure” with a smile.

Fast forward to yesterday. I had found a place on the internet that was not too far, but not too close that we might bump into someone we know. We drove an hour and a half up towards London, and down a few dirt roads to a very secluded spot. The driveway was marked with only a small sign, and then we still had to follow a long winding driveway into a very dense wooded area. When the trees cleared to a parking area, I spotted a naked person off in the distance. It looked to be an older person, and I thought, oh no, it’s going to be all dirty old men. I was worried.

We got out of the van and walked to the main building timidly where you must check in and pay the entrance fee. Kelly rang the bell, and we waited. I heard voice coming from the lunchroom area, and so I peaked around the corner. Just some people having lunch. Oh, and they were nude. I was pleased that they were all couples, and just a bit older than us, but I averted my eyes.

A very kind older man took our money and registered us. Yes, he was naked too. Then he showed us around the property. The hall, the lounge, the pool, the kids play area, the pool house with wheelchair accessible bathrooms and showers, and the volleyball courts and entry points to the trails. All the while Kelly and me, fully clothed, passing groups of nude people, swimming or tanning or eating lunch.  That was the only uncomfortable part of the day. Being in the presence of naked people, when you yourself are not. It felt wrong.

When the man left us, Kelly and I went back to the van. Kelly had asked him where people usually disrobe, and he said right by the car. She wasted no time. Once in the van, she striped off all her clothes, put her shoes back on, took breath, and came out into the open. We grabbed my back pack with my towel and what not, and walked back to the pool house, again, passing a group of nude people tanning and chatting about restaurants. They smiled at us. Once in the change room, Kelly helped me strip down and get my towel to sit on. We packed up my clothes and then turned toward the door. “Are you ready?” she said

I had butterflies, but just for a few seconds. I smiled and went through the door. And there I was, completely nude in front of a large group of complete strangers. They all looked at us and smiled again, and they made small talk. They asked if we were first timers. I laughed and jokingly asked how they could tell, pointing to our blindingly white skin. And so it went, for the next three to four hours. We walked around the grounds through the many nature trails, we had a snack at the picnic tables, we visited a pond and looked at birds and butterflies. The entire time nude. We would come across strangers here and there, but there was no anxiety or apprehension at all. Nothing They were naked too. It’s just normal there We chatted with them, all of them asking if we were enjoying the day, and most asking if we would return.

You are probably wondering, how did you not look at….you know. Well, I did, I mean how can you not look, there’s a naked person right in front of you! But it’s ok. I had read that first timers have a hard time not looking, and that it’s considered ok as long as you don’t stare, which of course we didn’t. But I did glance, of course, and so did they. It’s ok. It really was fine.

At one point, I went back to the van to get something, and a group of people were about to leave and were loading their car. They had gotten dressed. They started chatting with me and we ended up having a five minute conversation. About half way through, I realized I was naked. I had already gotten so comfortable that I had forgotten.  So there I was completely nude, talking to a group of people who were fully dressed, and it didn’t bother me one bit. It’s ok to be nude there, it’s expected. But honestly it made me laugh afterwards, because it seemed like that dream we all have where you show up for work and realise you forgot to put clothes on.

So how do I sum this up?  Well, I can’t stress enough how wonderful the people there were. Honestly, everyone was so nice to us and made us feel so welcomed. I had a bit of apprehension beforehand as to whether or not a person with a disability would be accepted. I had even called to ask if that was ok. The man on the phone didn’t seem to understand my question. Now I understand why. When you get naked, nobody is perfect. Everyone has differences. It’s all accepted. It’s all ok.

I’m sure you all remember how uncomfortable I was just taking off my shirt for the first time, and how many layers and years of body acceptance I had to fight through just to get to that stage. I was stunned to realize afterwards that I had NONE of those issues here. None whatsoever. I just did it. My only slight nervousness was about being nude itself, not about my body, and to be honest that was more of a rush than anything  And this isn’t about looking good. It’s about being free of all that, of those restraints that we put on ourselves, that we try to cover up with layers of clothes. Take the clothes off in a place like this, and it’s gone. And I have to tell you it works. The second I got naked and wandered out in front of others, I felt equal to them. I was just another naked body. I had imperfections sure, but so did they, I can see them, and so what? It was so wonderful to go for a nature walk and be free of clothes, to feel the wind and the sun, and even for a bit, the rain on our bodies.

If you are reading this and thinking ew ew ew, yuk yuk, no no never. Then don’t, it’s not for you. But if you are reading and feeling the least bit curious, if you feel like trying it but are afraid you can’t, yet you still want to know more, then don’t wait 15 years to convince yourself like I did. Do it. Just try. Find a place far enough away, go, pay the fee, strip off all your clothes and walk out that door.  Who’s gonna know? What’s it going to hurt? Your soul will thank you. I promise. I am still on a high from the whole thing. And oh yes, we will be going back.

15 Comments leave one →
  1. August 6, 2008 8:00 am

    Congratulations! (Seems like both a funny and totally appropriate thing to wish to you at the same time… 😉 🙂

    Sounds like a wonderful day, and looked delightfully relaxing from Kelly’s pictures. (The shot of her at the picnic table is so cute!)

  2. August 6, 2008 8:01 am

    I have to say – WHOOHOOOO!!!! Talk about a cool experience!

    But I also have to say, after checking out Kelly’s account: Where’s the photographic evidence, Sylvain? 🙂 *wink wink*

  3. August 6, 2008 10:48 am

    I used to work with a guy who lived at a nudist place not far from us. He LOVED it there, and would repeatedly drop his shorts and moon us, just to prove he didn’t have a tan line.

  4. August 6, 2008 1:14 pm

    It is beautiful for me to see that your long-held dreams are coming true with Kelly. It sounds like a wonderful experience, and it was healing for me in some ways as well just to share in the recounting of it by you and Kelly and by pondering Kelly’s pictures. Thank you for being willing to share with us.
    Blessings and love,

  5. August 6, 2008 2:31 pm

    Sounds like it was a great day.

  6. August 6, 2008 8:59 pm

    We’re going back, are we? Well…okay. So long as I can bring my algebra.

  7. August 7, 2008 2:10 pm

    I wondered where you were and now I know!
    You made me smile and laugh and wonder…
    I’m glad the two of you enjoyed it.
    NOw off to Kelly’s to see photos too? Oh my.
    You are adventurous you two.
    and my first thought upon starting the read was
    boy, he made a major leap from must taking his shirt off…

  8. August 10, 2008 4:27 pm

    loved reading the account on kelly’s blog as well!!! It’s so funny-I was telling her that it really is one person’s brave is another person’s cakewalk because there is NO WAY I think I could do that!! I love that you guys did and enjoyed it-truly. And I loved that it was healing for you-that rocks.

    and thank you for the well wishes on my blog as far as the ‘procedure’ went.

    Now- a fried pickle is a southern delight. Think fried mushroom or zucchini-they do fry stuff in canada dont’ they??? 😉 We fry everything here in texas. Anyway, yes covered in batter and fried and then dipped in ranch dressing. HEAVEN.

  9. August 13, 2008 6:59 pm

    Sylvain, some of my best friends are nudists (sorry…could not resist the cliché).

    I am totally enthralled to read your tale, and it is such a powerful illustration of where one can get when one gets the bleep out of one’s own way.

    If you don’t mind, I’ll be taking your word for how wonderful it is. It has never been an interest for me, so I’ll be fine listed in your “wimps not even willing to give it a try” column.

    Thanks for the great and colorful story!

  10. August 21, 2008 11:56 am

    You are cordially invited to the wedding of my son and his bride on my blogsite. Please bring a guest.
    It’s black tie.

  11. August 25, 2008 9:11 am

    I do not wish to alarm you, Sylvain, but it’s been TWENTY days since you last blogged. TWENTY! HELLO?!



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