Sunshine, Sun-cream, Sun-burn and Shade

It’s a hot, hot day here in the UK. It’s a day that my Gran would say is ‘wall-to-wall blue’. In other words, no clouds and lots of ‘the yellow stuff’.

It’s a day when the animals all lie down under the shade of trees and hedge-rows;

A day when the Europeans all relax with a siesta under cover;

A day when us Brits all charge outside with minimal clothing and try and get a tan – quickly turning from pasty white to lobster red in the space of about 15 minutes!

I am particularly good at not going brown… I might be dark-haired but, oh man, I can burn bright red as fast as you can say it. And I just LOVE when people say ‘oh, don’t worry, you will be a nice brown underneath once the skin has peeled!’

Really. REALLY!

No I won’t. Trust me – I won’t have a nice tan because underneath this stinging skin is, guess what? – You got it – more white pasty skin.

So, no, I’m not going to lie out in the sun trying to go brown. It isn’t happening. The pain isn’t worth it. I’m happy to be pale. Sadly, so is number one son – except he looks like he has a tan but really it’s the freckles all joining up and holding hands. Apparently, this burning and freckle thing is a genetic joy that comes from having a parent with ginger hair – thanks dad!

However, husband and number two son – they are the kind that make me feel somewhat annoyed by the whole process. You only have to mention the word sun to them and you can visibly see their skin turning into a gorgeous golden brown color. So brown and European looking in fact that I can’t remember how many times I have heard my husband be asked where he comes from, Spain or Italy. Sorry to disappoint he’s from Shropshire, UK… and his parents… and their parents…

One of my fun games I play on a day like this, being so grumpy about the fact that I’m not getting a tan, is to play ‘spot the sun burn’ when I’m out shopping or on the school walk. I only get (slightly) amused when I see glowing red shoulders or back walking past¬†and have the thought… ‘oh my, that’s going to hurt later this evening.’ Ha. No envy here! However, in truth I know how much it hurts from many past bad experiences when I got caught out in an unexpected mini-heat-wave or two.

Anyways, enough of my jealousy of those brown tans.

My idea for today is to either sit inside in the cool or else sit out under some shade with a long cold drink and a book. And as we have limited natural shade I’m going to need to parasol. If you don’t have one, then there are lots of different styles and types around these days – not just a pretty umbrella on a stick…

Here’s a link to my review article on the topic of parasols, which includes lots of things to think about as well as my top ten pick of parasol designs.

Click Here

I’m now off to brave the weather on the school-run, well, after I’ve put on several layers of sun-cream, a wide brimmed hat and made sure that all skin is well and truly hidden.

Bye for now

Alison

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