Nudity Becomes Normal

Imagine hiking with your children through a picturesque scene. A magnificent blue sky canopies the strikingly white boulders bordering the sea. Deep aquamarine water spans the horizon, and vibrant green cypress trees offer shade…to some very tan buns.

Once again, we’ve wandered into the territory of Croatia’s “nakationers.” If you walk along the coast long enough, eventually you will encounter at least a few nudists here in this country where the birthday suit is fully embraced. I will admit that I’m a little envious of those who have the carefree nature and complete comfort in their skin to bare all in public places. Maybe when I’m in my 60s I will get there, because that seems to be the age of most nude sunbathers we’ve come across. I guess I’ve got a few years to go.

My only concern was the scarring effect that seeing a nude 65-year-old man might have on our girls. (Would they ever look at their grandpas the same way again?!) However, we’ve gotten a little lucky logistically. It’s primarily been the backside and not the full frontal to which the girls have been momentarily exposed. I think that has something to do with my extremely effective distraction tactics (“Alison look! Something shiny!”) combined with fervent, silent prayers of “Please don’t let that guy turn around, please don’t turn around, please don’t turn around….”

I’ve also realized that the girls simply don’t care. They are completely nonplussed by these periodic encounters with the nudist community. I did get one inquiry of “Mom, why are your boobs so much smaller than that lady’s?” accompanied by a big, dramatic pointing of the finger with full arm extension. (Discreet, Alison, real discreet.) Other than that, they haven’t seemed to really notice it.

At one point I pursued the topic, I guess in an attempt to be motherly and give myself peace of mind that the situation wasn’t freaking them out. I nonchalantly (or so I thought) said, “They aren’t wearing any clothes, huh?” The responses were mixed. Emily shrugged. Liv gave me a distracted “Uh-huh.” Ali got a thoughtful expression on her little face, paused for a moment and replied, “I kind of wish I was naked right now.”

That one might give us trouble in a few years…. :-)

About the Author

Tracey Carisch

Mom, wife, friend and change agent traveling the world with my family to learn our place in it. After spending a career in organizational change management and community initiative implementation, I put my career on hold for our family's trip around the world. In April of 2014 we sold almost everything we own, put the rest in a storage container, and departed on this journey. While my husband continued his software development work to financially support our trip, I planned and documented our adventure, homeschooled our three daughters, and found volunteer work opportunities for us to do in the communities we visit. Now that we've returned to the U.S., I'm completing book about our family's adventure and our lessons learned.

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