Saturday, June 11, 2016
Before and After (PSA Disguised as a Fashion Post)
This cotton dress is another piece of Mexican tourist wear, though much later than most of the pieces I own. I would guess it is late 80's-90's but it could be even newer. Made in Guadalajara, it is clearly for the tourist trade as the label and washing instructions are in English. The patch on the front is a pocket-just large enough to carry a room key and a few Pesos to the resort beach. "Resort Beach", are there any better words in the English language? Anyway, with our heat of 104 F degrees expected (that's 40 degrees Celsius outside the US) and high humidity, the thought of wearing much more than a loose cotton dress isn't terribly appealing. Sadly, Omaha is not a beach resort (no beach=no beach resort) and if I want a tropical drink I'll have to fix it myself.
As I'm prone to severe sunburn (I'll be getting to that later) I need to keep covered-up in the direct sun. This Eileen Fisher shirt is light enough to wear without dying in the heat, and easy enough to shed when out of direct sunlight. I have a collection of linen shirts stashed around the house, in the car, by the garden-all so I won't accidentally find myself without adequate coverage. Sunscreen helps, but when the serious sun is out, I need all the protection I can get.
Mexican cotton dress-Hand-Me-Ups
Liz Claiborne earrings-Von Maur about 15 years ago
Vintage bag-New Life Thrift
Bamboo bracelets-Hand-Me-Ups & Goodwill
Hair Flower-Tiff and Tam
Eileen Fisher linen shirt (has matching trousers) Goodwill
So now we've come to the "Heavy handed lecture" part of the post.
This is my back. Today, I've only had a couple of moles start spontaneous bleeding (Wisk does an ace job of removing blood spots from clothing, BTW). This is a good day. I've long since accepted the scars as a reminder of my youthful stupidity. I'm sparing you the close-up view. You're welcome.
For the rest of my life I'll need to be vigilant about having things carved out of my back (I think that deserves bold type) and worrying about whether it will eventually be the thing that kills me-all because my younger self figured I was immortal, and didn't need to worry about a few sunburns here and there. The thing is, a few blistering sunburns here and there on the same area spells trouble. Why was my back repeatedly subjected to the sun?
Great tan, eh?
(That's mud on my legs. There was mud everywhere as that particular site was below the water-table and we had to bail it out each morning).
Funny thing about archaeologists-our faces stay young because we're always peering down at the ground thus avoiding sun damage! I console myself that my face looks better than it ought to given I use almost no skincare beyond Ponds cold cream and Pears soap. My back is another story. If my face blistered and burned as much as my back and shoulders did, I surely would have used something to protect it-why I ignored my back is beyond comprehension today. I never liked the way dirt clung to sunscreen (this was long before the lightweight dry formulas) so being young and stupid, I simply skipped it. More than thirty years on, I curse that decision each time I slap a plaster over yet another mole that has decided to start bleeding. Worth it? God, no.
I can't go back and lecture my younger self, so I'm taking this opportunity to lecture younger readers who think the warnings about sun exposure don't apply to them. Can you sunbathe safely? I have no idea, but I do know that getting to the point of blistering burns is very bad news. Doing it repeatedly is pure stupidity.
Okay, lecture over. I promise not to show you any more photos of my back.