Thursday, April 21, 2011

Tanning in France: More Problematic than One Would Think

          As a native Californian, I have never been this pale in April, ever. I blame the astoundingly normal number of cloudy days with cool temperatures here in France, which fellow Frenchmen and the rest of the world have long been accustomed to. They may have settled for eternal pastiness, but I have not. Yesterday, I set out to the Parc de la Tête d'Or to remedy the situation, only to discover that tanning in France is fraught with perils of all kinds. 
          The perils classified themselves mainly into two groups, the first of which being creepy men. Guys in all settings tend to be way more aggressive in Europe, whether in a club or on the street, and they take the smallest sign, like accidental eye contact or any remark sent their way as encouragement. So, despite asking around first and doing a little research about how weird it would be to lie on a towel in my bikini, despite being assured that it was normal and that women did it all the time here, there was a certain amount of leering. The worst part was not the gardener telling me that I was magnifique, or even the guy who had the balls to sit down next to me and talk to me for 20 minutes despite my slightly irritated demeanor. He wasn't so bad, because, I at least got to practice my French with a real French person. 
           No. That was not the worst part by a long shot. The worst part was the FLYING. ANTS. 
          If right now you are thinking "WTF?" then yes, that is the correct response. Ants with wings, than can land your towel or on you, that couldn't care less that you're just trying to read or that you're being pestered to death by strangers. It's hard to pretend to be asleep to avoid creepers if you have to keep swatting insects off your legs. But do the ants care? No. They have no compassion, because they're disgusting freaking ANTS. And extremely mobile ones at that. 
            Needless to say, the two hours spent tanning were all kinds of disgusting, but both my reflexes and my patience have infinitely improved, and I'm not a pale-ish white color of "ick" anymore. Right after #1 (Wearing My Five Inch Stiletto Wedges To Work in a Moment of Foolish Hubris), we'll but this as the #2 most painful thing I've done for beauty. 
I was going to work in relevancy somehow by saying how the dog feels beautiful, but let's be honest;  I really just wanted to put this picture up regardless of what it has to do with.


  1. pushing the "piece of meat" metaphor (or meataphor?) to its very limits with that picture :)

  2. You seem like a smart person, who might want to know...the expression is "couldn't care less". "Could care less" means the ants do care, but could, care less. Bon jour.