The wearing of the green

I was going to do a post yesterday, St. Patrick’s Day, as the grid is awash with green at this time of year. We’ve covered St.Patrick’s Day ourselves before, but I decided I’d give it a miss this year, as there’s nothing more disturbing, in 2017, than any display of nationalism, an ideology I loathe. Wrapping yourselves in a flag, any flag, in 2017???? Please, people, stop and think.

Why would you want to identify with one nation, even the one you were born in?

The Brexit vote in the UK has re-awakened a creepy nationalist fervour (amongst some) here in Scotland, and also -with some relevance to St. Patrick’s Day- opened up the same debate in Ireland, as Northern Ireland, a region of the UK, voted to Remain in the EU, ergo -it’s time for a ‘border poll’ about reunifying the two parts of Ireland into one.

Irish politics are complex, and the variety of opinions I heard last weekend in Dublin demonstrated, to me, that it’s not something any of us can delve into with any degree of certainty or knowledge, unless we’re actually Irish. Even then…

Clothes…flags…face paints…that nail our colours to a mast of national identification? No, not for me, thanks. It shouldn’t be for you either.

This got me thinking about the way we dress ourselves up in clothes and flags to identify with an extremely narrow definition of our humanity. My accent is one of southern England, enough of an identifier for me to have endured some low-level ‘racism’ from die-hard Scots. I am a ‘sassenach‘, an ‘enemy’. Because I’m perceived as ‘English’, rather than the (by accident of geography) English-born mother of three Scottish children, two of whom (the youngest is too young to understand) identify with Scottish culture and traditions. Die-hard Scots, wrapping themselves in a saltire, narrow their world-view when they drape a bit of cloth around their shoulders. All nationalists do the same thing.

What’s so ‘great’ about being Scottish anyway? Or English? Or Irish? Or American? Or German? Or from anywhere else?

Naturism is sometimes spoken of as being ‘a great leveller’. Again and again, people will comment on how other ‘badges’ of status are removed. The Judge or Doctor is seen on terms of his or her naked humanity, rather than the powerful lawman in a robe, or powerful physician with a white coat and stethoscope. This is a very true representation of naturism. We just become people, when stripped of our clothes. We naturists talk to one another on that basis. We don’t judge each other on terms of our professions. Perhaps the same should be applied to those wrapping themselves in flags, literally or figuratively. Of course naturists celebrate aspects of national culture. I know at least three naturist locations which will have held St. Patrick’s parties yesterday, but this is more an opportunity for mutual understanding rather than division. The food will be of an Irish flavour -stew, colcannon, Guinness- and was probably attended by as many English (or Scots) naturists as Irish ones. It’s a cultural understanding, rather than a flag-waving one. In a month’s time (April 23rd) there will be an equally English orientated naturist party, with the emphasis on roast beef and Yorkshire puddings, perhaps some folk song and so on. Flags may be in evidence, but no one is wearing one. In June, the British and Irish ex-pats will join their Spanish friends for festivals that celebrate some uniquely Spanish traditions. Once again, flags may be in evidence, for colour more than anything else, but no one will be wearing one. Stripped of clothing, we all look the same, and in a sense our religion, our nationality, can be identified as naturist as opposed to that of some man-made, dreamt up border. The man made, dreamt up borders of the mind.

 

When it comes to ‘the wearing of the green’, for us naturists that means wrapping ourselves not in a flag, but in the wonderful colours of nature.

Irish avatar Caireann finds herself ‘wearing the green’ in the natural surroundings of SL

Ella

 

 

 

 

‘I was naked because I was hot’

I’m glad to say I’ll be back to regular posting as from this weekend, following a weekend in Dublin for work-related stuff last weekend. This should, hopefully, become the norm from now, with both weekend and midweek postings related to all manner of SL and real world naturism. My winter of exceptionally busy real life is now settling back to a more familiar pattern.

In the meantime, a story from today’s Daily Mail

A British tourist has stripped naked in Bangkok because ‘she was hot’ and ‘felt liked doing her own thing’. Apparently. At least, that’s how the story is presented. Just ‘another naked exhibitionist’.

I’ve picked the Daily Mail as the source for repeating the story because their reporting is somewhat confusing, concluding that she was ‘evaluated by the police’, giving rise to the suspicion that ‘being naked means mental illness’.

It’s only when you read other sources that the possibility of some sort of mental trauma may have been the reason behind her behaviour. It’s not just, as the Daily Mail would have you believe, ‘another naked exhibitionist’….the undertone of the DM’s report.

President Trump continues his war on press dishonesty, a campaign being poo-poohed by many observers, but when you read some articles, such as the Daily Mail’s reporting (subsequently repeated in other global news outlets) there’s little doubt in my mind that he’s onto something. It’s then this reporting that creates a series of comments about the woman ‘wanting fifteen minutes of fame’ or ‘disrespecting local values’ and how it’s ‘only Brits who behave like this when abroad’.

Which is exactly what I thought on initial reading of the report. Another thrill-seeking exhibitionist Brit abroad disrespecting local values and setting back the case for expanding the opportunities for public nudity, within reason, reinforcing Brits (and others) low-level disapproval of naturism and the naked state of being.

Shameful reporting. It seems clear there are other issues involved, and it’s another set of knee-jerk reactions from a small-minded Daily Mail readerships commenting on the story, commenting on clearly distorted facts.

While I’m all in favour of a global policy of ‘being naked because I was hot’, on purely logical grounds, I also expect and demand a strict sticking to the facts from some elements of a shameful media.

Ella

 

 

 

BLM goes Dutch

Blue Lagoon Marina continues to fascinate me in the manner of its development. It is growing in a very organic manner which appears to be encouraging a great level of diversity.

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One example is that a section of it is developing in the style of a Dutch village. Called Lemmer, presumably after a real life village of the same name in the Netherlands, the sim has houses in the style of typical Dutch architecture, the gabled houses, and green painted houses typical of a town called Marken, which I’ve visited in RL.

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Cherie explores typical Dutch housing in the Lemmer part of the Blue Lagoon Estate

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Cherie on board a Dutch barge

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Duncan poses beside a windmill

duncan-blm_001bParts of the Netherlands are very much rural, farming country, and at this time of year I imagine (like my part of the world) the ‘lambing season’ is now underway. Above, Duncan adopts the role of naturist farmer, tending a new born lamb. In the background, you can see a gabled house typical of the Dutch style.

BLM is fast becoming a go-to location for the sort of geographic diversity I recall from my early days in SL, when it was possible to hop from one part of the world to another in seconds, when sims existed for their own sake rather than have to have some commercial value. I welcome the manner in which Blue Lagoon appears to be encouraging this diversity, as well as adopting an exceptionally positive approach to its own infrastructure. I hope this trend continues!

Ella

Spring is coming!

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Spring is coming! And so is the new naturist season (in the northern hemisphere).

As many of you will know, I use images from numerous tumblr sites to illustrate these pages. I’ve got several sites bookmarked as ‘naturist tumblr’ sites, and I’m always amused that some men (always men) will make comments such as ‘I didn’t come here to see dicks’.

If you’re a genuine naturist, you will know that naturism includes both genders, male and female, and cropping photos to remove evidence of men isn’t remotely genuinely naturist. Many tumblr sites present themselves as naturist, but exploration of them reveals that they’re male-free and also include many photos that aren’t naturist, but more sexual in nature.

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Fellas, please don’t be afraid of a penis. It’s involved in 50% of naturist activity. If you’re a genuine naturist, you’ll know that penises are ever-present, so don’t try to present yourself as a genuine naturist by displaying some sort of phobia to male genitalia.

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Furthermore, some people accept displays of affection between people of different genders, but recoil in horror at displays of affection between same-sex couples, specifically male couples (the whole lesbian display of affection doesn’t have the same anathema to many males).

Naturism is a very inclusive lifestyle. We don’t recoil in horror by larger sized people, older people or people of the same gender involved as a couple. Be reminded that this is naturism, not just naked women of a certain age and size doing things to male genitalia.

Ella

 

Eden’s New(ish) central teleport point

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Naturism is inclusive. An LGBT flag proudly flies at the Eden Estate

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Leeroy poses by the new fountain at Eden’s central tp point

The long-standing rotunda at the Eden Naturist Estate has been demolished, and replaced with a brand new, and wonderful looking, stone bungalow. It has given Eden’s hub a whole new look and feel, freshening the place up, modernising it and pointing the way forward for a new phase in Eden’s ongoing development.

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I’ve no idea who Eden’s gardeners are, but they are doing a fabulous job! The place is pristine, and the small details at Eden are, as usual, spectacular. Beneath the flower beds and fountain, new brick paving. This is key to the Eden ‘style’, which always has a wonderful attention to the small details that make it what it is.

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Step inside the building and there’s a cosy inner quadrangle that feels…right! A nice spot to sit and chat, as I did, with avatars teleporting in. Above, Louise and Mark posed for my camera.

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Did I mention detailing? ūüėČ With the daffodils in bloom in my own garden, it’s a delight to see them equally in flower at Eden.

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If you haven’t visited Eden’s new central tp point yet, set that right today with a visit! I do enjoy the manner in which Eden maintains a familiarity, yet always manages to subtly change. Not so much that it’s jarring, as happens on so many sims, but with a sense of ‘real time’ development. After several years, the rotunda was simply modernised, just as any naturist location in real life will develop and modernise.

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The landscaping is simply astounding!

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Jose is asked to pose in a familiar location to us! ūüėČ

On a personal level, a winter of an exceptionally heavy workload ends next weekend! (Hooray!) and I’m planning to be back in SL more regularly, any maybe trying to get a little SLN Saturday Soiree going.

Ella

Vintage Season, 2017 (Part 1)

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Although there’s some evidence to suggest that the Ile du Levant (France) was one of the first nudist colonies, naturism, as FKK, freikoerperkultur, first took off in Germany over 100 years ago.

It grew to be huge in Germany in a short space of time, with Sylt in Germany laying claim to the first established nudist beach in 1920. Naturism, or nudism, faced opposition when the Nazis began their rise to power in Germany, but there was something of a backlash from the nudists, who placed so much importance on the exposure of the skin to the air for health benefits, allied to an emphasis on physical wellbeing and exercise, that the Nazis backed down to a large degree. There was also a great deal of opposition due to the fact that many leading Nazis were nudists themselves!

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In much naturist literature, from Germany and beyond, this emphasis on physical wellbeing was paramount. Indeed, a weekend at the local nudist camp might well have involved a lot of physical activity building facilities, clearing streams, involvement in physical exercise as much as simply taking their clothes off! The photos of the era (above and below) show nudists swimming, taking exercise and such like. Not for nothing is the UK’s (and the world’s!) longest running naturist magazine called Health & Efficiency!

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Yep. The emphasis, in the early years, was very much on health, rather than just taking your clothes off. Part of the route to health was, of course, consuming as much Vitamin D as possible. As it’s absorbed via sunlight, the best way to absorb as much as possible was by exposing as much skin to sunlight as possible, ergo, naturism and physical exercise.

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In many ways, naturism or FKK was simply ahead of the curve by a century. In 2017 we’ve got all these health food shops, an emphasis again on physical exercise as so many of us have sedentary jobs, and so on. The early naturists simply got there first, 100 years and more ago.

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While partially suppressed by Nazism, German naturism continued, and even thrived after WW2 and the establishment of the ‘Iron Curtain‘. It was hugely popular, for example, in the former East Germany/DDR.¬†¬†In a paranoid atmosphere of citizen spying on citizen, and an estimated 10% of the population being informants for the intelligence service Stasi, the appeal of naturism was clear. No clothes to hide secret recording devices, and the population capable of speaking more freely in a naturist environment.

This blog has long reported on the fact that German Chancellor Angela Merkel was thought to be a naturist and we’ve published photos previously of those suggested to be the German Chancellor. For the record, we don’t believe it is her, and have said so, but it hasn’t laid the rumours to rest. The UK’s Daily Star newspaper even went as far as suggesting that she has refused to deny the photos are her.¬†Over the years, our various blog posts on that matter have been hugely, massively popular. It’s as if people want to believe a world leader is a naturist.

Indeed, it has become such a ‘thing’ that a search on Google for ‘Angela Merkel Nude’ leads back to numerous postings on this very blog!

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¬†repeat, I’m not convinced the photo are Frau Merkel. Although I’d certainly be delighted, when she leaves office, that she said ‘actually, yes, that’s me!’. Such a boost for naturism!

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Anyway, let’s track back to the 1920s, pre-Nazism, and the early days of nudism/naturism.

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Our friend Abbey, who lives her SL in a retro/vintage fashion (including, but not exclusively, in a naturist sense (above), has been to the Berlin 1920s Project sim, where each Saturday evening there’s a nudist hour (every Saturday from 1200pm SLT, 8pm GMT, 9pm CET) in their Volksbad, or People’s Baths.

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Abbey reports…‘no one apart from me and my significant other, but it was a lovely indoor SL swim and we’ll do it again!’

Where naturist opportunities present themselves, people, grab them! In or out of SL. 1920s Berlin isn’t a naturist sim, but they offer naturist potential. Use them or lose them!

And that seems like the perfect jumping on place for 2017’s Vintage Season! Over the next three weeks, our emphasis will be on vintage naturism. I’ve long been seeking the time and space to visit Berlin 1920s for myself, but circumstances have conspired against me and will do so again next Saturday, when I’m in Dublin, Ireland, for work related stuff and unlikely to be able to post at all.

However, two weeks hence, March 18th, I plan to be in Berlin, 1920, in SL, so if you want a chat, make a date and record the slurl.

Ella