Nu comme le jour où je suis né

Month: December 2019

Christmas Day and Family and the Yuletide

Early Christmas morning

I’m in Red Deer, Alberta visiting at my son’s home. He is our youngest and is father to our three youngest grandchildren. We arrived yesterday afternoon, much to the joy of the grandchildren while our son was still at work. It was time for games and playtime.

When I woke this morning around six in the morning, I didn’t waste time putting on the coffee as there wasn’t going to be much time before everyone woke up to see what was under the tree. Getting up early also meant a rare moment for being clothing free.

For me, Christmas in Red Deer with our youngest grandchildren was a trip into the past when our children were young and excited for Christmas morning. Last year we spent the day alone as the weather wasn’t conducive to our children travelling to our home. The year before we spent Christmas in South America. This made the day more precious to us.

Until about four years ago, Christmas was always at our home with only a few exceptions such as when we were both teaching in China. Now, it is getting more and more unlikely that we will host Christmas in our home. It seems that with our family, it is getting more and more difficult to make it happen because of shift work for our children, and now for our two eldest grandchildren. Life changes. We are getting older and are more willing to do the travelling. We couldn’t all get together at the same time, but we have been able to make the arrangements to ensure that all eight grandchildren and the partners of those grandchildren who are now young adults.

I am blessed with my life, my children, my grandchildren, and the woman who has somehow managed to survive the hard years when I was suffering mentally.

Curiously, it seems we are closer than ever, as hard as it is to imagine that even being possible. Now, all I have to do is to stay out of trouble, keep my clothes on when appropriate when others who are not naturists, are present, especially in their homes, and stay healthy enough to enjoy living.

Merry Christmas, Joyeux Noel, Feliz Navidad, Happy Hanukkah, and Happy Yuletide . For me, it is the Yuletide more than Christmas, that has meaning. From the approach to the winter solstice to just after the birth of a New Year, I treasure the lights in the darkness, especially the light of family connection. I wish the connection of family and/or friends in your life during yuletide. Be the light in their lives.

Winter Solstice – The Beginnings of Hope

I woke up, as usual, in the dark. At most times of the year, it would already be daylight at the same time of day, here on the Canadian prairies. Since today is the official day for the Winter Solstice, this only makes sense – the longest night and the shortest day here in the northern hemisphere. It’s not the friendliest time of the year for humans. Like many others, I have been putting links to help lines on various social media platforms, especially the suicide hotlines.  It’s a sad reality for too many, that at this darkest time of year, depression and hopelessness seem to gain ascendancy. However, there is one important thing to remember during this Dark Night of the Soul . . . the way forward is into increasing light.

The above is “normal” in terms of the psychological make up of humans.  However, there are other factors now in play that worsen the psychological situation. Trump has been impeached in the USA. However, rather than helping a significant percentage of the population, the anti-Trump crowd, if anything tensions are now worse with both sides of that existential conflict left in limbo. Democratic government doesn’t seem to matter anymore, leaving people feeling abandoned and powerless and dispirited. In Britain, the election of Boris Johnson has taken that country down a similar path. The hopes of having the UK respond with any sanity to environmental issues have been dashed and shattered, at least for four to five years.

In Canada, we faced the same threat in our recent national election. The centrist party squeaked out a minority government. That said, we know that minority government is typically short lived. The general mood is that of a hammer being held over our heads, waiting until the opportune moment for it to fall and persuade the people to elect another anti-environment government. How does this happen? Pit us all against each other so that anyone and everyone who doesn’t echo what we want or believe is tagged as the enemy. We see the truth of this in social media where intolerance is running rampant.

It’s enough to say fuck it and disappear into some proverbial forest to live off the land away from people. Yesterday, I came across this song that I want to share that sort of echoes this sentiment by Thomas Benjamin Wild.  It’s a hilarious song, something sorely needed at this time of year. After all, from this moment in time forward, we are marching back to the light that promises us spring and summer.

How are you doing? What are your hopes for the tomorrows to come?

Body Acceptance – Self and Others – It’s a Complexed Situation

Body image – the courage to be

Well, yesterday’s post caused a shift in reader response, both here and on other Social Media platforms. Generally, the response was very positive. One response, however, was challenging. It happens when an idea challenges one’s belief system. Why do we so readily dismiss other ideas? Still, that response had me think hard about body acceptance.  Just what does that mean – body acceptance?

From a naturist point of view, it appears to mean that we are uncritical of the appearance of others in their naked state. We see a person who is without clothing and are non-judgmental about that person’s physical state. It sounds simple. However, since we all come programmed [psychologically] with a host of complexes and triggers, it really isn’t simple at all. No one is walking around the planet complex free, as much as one wants to think they are. If you fall in love, a complex is involved. If you respond with any emotional heat, a complex is involved. Of course, the more conscious one is about their complexes, the more one is tolerant and compassionate about the complexity of others.

I am not as young as I once was – an understatement that often gives me a chuckle. I like being my age, for the most part. At one point in my life, I was thirty or so pounds lighter. I was skinny. I would run marathons. And, I was unaware of my complexes. Though I was a decent competitive runner, I was never good enough in my own eyes. In time, my body protested hard enough to bring excessive running to an end. I didn’t run for physical fitness or to maintain a certain body weight. I didn’t know why I ran. I just had to run and keep running. As I became more aware of my complexes, the need to run lessened. Now I walk for enjoyment, usually; sometimes because I get caught in an old complex and push the pace and the distance. Regardless, my body has paid the price for what I did and what I didn’t do to consciously care for it. Nowadays, I listen to my body better. I see my body more honestly. And, I do what I can for my body. After all, there is no replacement model which I can purchase.

Too many see body acceptance as a passive act, especially with regards to themselves. Look in the mirror and accept what you see there. All is good. Well, that is debatable. Is it “all good”? Does your body give you hints about needing to be treated better? We all know the answer to that question. However, most of us don’t have the will of the fortitude to make the changes our bodies are asking of us. It’s easier to see in others and make judgments about them and how they treat their bodies.

Of course, even though we say we have good body acceptance of ourselves, we know we are lying. We have visits to doctors for medications, a protest against accepting the status quo. We want to be better and will take any pill a doctor prescribes, even if it means several other prescriptions for coping with various side effects. We want to feel our best physically and mentally. Yet, we are typically too lazy to do much of the work to obtain needed physical change that our bodies are craving – diet, exercise, life style, etc.

For example, coffee is not good for me, nor is salt. If consumption is not reduced, there is this small issue of blood pressure that rears its ugly head. My options, and yes we typically all have options, cut down on the use of salt and drink less beverages containing caffeine. Or, get a prescription for blood pressure medication. Get the meds and I can continue to enjoy drinking almost as much coffee as I want. – This is me, not you. This is my body, not yours. I am not talking about you and your situation. – My response, less coffee and reduce the intake of salt while monitoring my blood pressure. Of course, I also have to do less sitting at the computer and more around more to accelerate recovery.  I have been down this path twice before over the past decade and I have managed to avoid the meds except for a short time seven years ago when my mental state was in a precarious situation.

I am probably ten pounds over my optimum weight for my body and my age. That is according to me, not the medical charts which have a different story to tell.  It’s not much and I likely shouldn’t even mention it. However, my body mentions it to me – not visually. I have no issue with how I look. Well, not that much. I have accepted being older and softer. If I don’t listen to my body, I get physical reminders such as pain and/or discomfort. Typically, as I go through relatively long periods of no pain, I am deaf to my body’s hints. And in this, I am quite normal.

Now, I know that there are significant and serious medical conditions that preclude such simplistic thinking, at least that what it appears to be on the surface. Yet, is it really simplistic thinking? Is there not actions we can take to treat our bodies better, to help our bodies?

The Issue of Body Hair and Naturism

Transparently me

I once again find myself writing here, wondering at the same time, why do I do this? Why do I write a blog post, especially on a site that is really not one that has a significant readership? Why do I place photos of myself in these posts? Obviously, it can’t be mostly about being an exhibitionist, though there is a bit of that in every blog post written by most people regardless of whether they are naturists, nudists, or folk that find comfort and safety in their clothing. With an average of about 12 visitors each day over the past two weeks, it is also, obviously, not about feeding my fan base. Okay, I’ll admit that the past two weeks have been an anomaly when it comes to my visitor count – December has its other demands from us. But the point remains, writing here does not seem to be about “others.” I guess that means that whatever is prompting me to keep writing on the blog site is about “self” – me, moi.

This photo, for example, is one taken this morning for me. The unedited version was placed in my personal journal which I maintain with more effort than I do this blog site. The photo was taken because of my attempt to be transparent with myself. It serves as a record of my physical state while the words serve as a record of my psychological state of being. The journal can’t really be called a diary as it doesn’t record much of what happened in my world. Now, I assume that simply knowing that I keep such a journal, one would wonder what the purpose of using some of my journal photos in this blog site is all about.

I took this photo because I had just trimmed off most of my body hair, something I will do again in two weeks time before we fly off to Ecuador. The photo then becomes a record; that’s it, an objective record of my physical self for December 19th, 2019. After writing my journal entry, I wondered about this whole thing regarding body hair and naturism. I’m seventy years old and no one cares if I have body hair or not. In the world of social naturism, especially in the online version of that collective, body hair sparks a never-ending debate. It seems absurd when you thing about it, especially when the body hair on one’s head is rarely questioned.

One neighbour commented to me that in her opinion, I look better and younger when I shave off my beard. That might be true, but it would never be an opinion that would persuade me to shave. She has often seen me nude and has never commented on my lack of pubic hair, or about the occasional appearance of hair on my back. Others, typically in the naturist community, have no comments to make about my beard or hair on my head, yet they do have something to say about the “pubes.” The responses fall into two camps, those for the smooth look and those for the “natural” look. Both sides try to influence “others” do do what they do, actions which are more about their need for validation that anything else. The truth is, it doesn’t matter one way or the other. My friend, Dan Carlson has written an excellent post on this, here.

The word “natural” has nothing to do with how we look and present ourselves. We are, each and every one one us, conscious and unconscious works of art in progress. If one was to strive to be as “natural” as possible, there would be no shaving, no haircuts, no nail trimming, no body-sculpting, and next-to-no plastic surgery. In a “natural” state, as far as body hair goes, I would be covered from head-to-toe with thick, coarse, very dark, body hair. Think of a black bear and you’ll have a good idea of just how hairy that would be. I found this image online to give you a good idea.

Now, there is nothing wrong with being this hairy. It is what it is. It is what we do with our body hair that becomes the question. Should we do anything? Purists say no. And of course, like all proselytizers, they get loud. It doesn’t matter what any self-proclaimed purist says. One makes decisions about body hair – haircuts, beard trims and styling, shaving off facial hair, trimming eyebrows or not, legs, backs, butts, and pubic region hair – for a variety of reasons. If a person does anything with regards to any body hair, then the “natural” argument goes away. It’s that simple.

Ah, there. Now I know why I decided to write a post today. Now, I open up the discourse to have you give your opinions about removal or modification of any and/or all body hair.

The Naked Pause Between One Visit and the Next

Indoors and clothing free

It’s cold outside. I mean, it is very cold outside. Think of -17 Celsius with a brisk breeze that makes it feel like -27 and you get a good idea of what cold looks like. Naturally, aside from going to the bank and post office, it has been a day for staying inside, staying nude. For me, being a writer, that is a win-win situation, especially as I have had no time for writing for almost a week. I have the rest of today and a few hours tomorrow morning for writing before we again hit the road for another round of visiting our grandchildren.

Tomorrow we begin with a four hour drive to visit our eldest grandchild, a young man and his girlfriend. We are taking them out for a Christmas meal at his favourite restaurant. A few hours later, we will drive another hour and a half before stopping for the night, only to continue the next morning. Seven hours later, we should be at the home of our second child with her three children in their teen years. It’s going to be a fun visit.

Though I am a committed naturist, I won’t be spending any time out of my clothing except for sleeping. Family trumps everything for me. After all, the vast majority of my days are spent out of my clothing as all of our children and grandchildren live at distance.

I have just published Chapter Three of the Father Time story on Wattpad. Chapter Four is ready to be published next Wednesday, and I am working on the revisions and rewrite of Chapter Five. The book is turning out to be much better than I had originally thought could be possible. I encourage you to click on the link to the Father Time story here, and read all four parts published to date. Don’t forget to click on the star [vote] so that I can get more exposure at Wattpad. As well, please feel free to share the link and the story with friends and family. It is a family friendly story.

It is the Way it is

My books and others

It’s a good day. This morning has been busy, beginning with a six kilometre walk in the countryside with my wife. Of course, we both wore winter clothing as it is winter on the Canadian prairies. Back at home following our walk, I was able to get into some serious editing work. I have given the second edit to Chapter Three of the Father Time book, as well as about two-thirds of Chapter Four.  In the last post, I included book links at Wattpad for those who would be interested in following along with the two stories being published there, one chapter at a time. For the Father Time book, I intend on publishing a new chapter every Wednesday. I already have 36 chapters on the site now waiting their turn, chapters that still need serious editing work.

But, my life isn’t just about writing. This afternoon, I will be going to the senior centre in our town to play Bridge. I will be the youngest player there with a few being over ninety years old. In the evening, we will both go to the senior centre for the annual Christmas Dinner. Though I am an introvert, I do make time to try and fit into our community.

As far as naturism is concerned, the only way to enjoy any nudity in the winter time in our town, is within my home, usually in my office/library. It’s not much, but it is better than nothing. It is the way it is.

It’s Official – This is My New Naturist Home

December BBQ

The past few days has seen my Naturist Lens site experience what seemed to be a non-ending stream of problems. It was because of the problems which resulted in posts disappearing forever into cyberspace, that I decided to create this version of the site – a back-up – just in case.

When I lost my two stats plugins which couldn’t be reinstalled, I knew the writing was on the wall. I can still see the stats from 2012 to the present at WordPress central for my account. Apparently I have had 291,074 visits to Naturist Lens since I began the blog site.

As well, I can’t see or connect with any of my followers at that site – 103 people. I am still able to post to that site though there would be no record of anyone visiting the site. I just posted a notice on Naturist Lens to let any who land on the site that this is my new home. That site will be discontinued in the near future.

Now, with all that said, life goes on for me. I am writing, as usual. I have three major writing works in progress.

  1. Historical Fiction – the story of a family from about 900 AD to 1900 AD. The story begins in France, with a stop in the Holy Lands during the Crusades, another stop in Spain during the time of the Templars, another stop in Scotland, and then a return to France. Then, in the second half of the 1600s, the shift to North America and Canada takes the family through to modern times. There is some naturism within the story, naturally occurring.
  2. Speculative Fiction/Naturist Fiction – A contemporary story of Celtic gods and goddesses among us. The setting is in Austria, Hungary, Spain, and France. Naturism is a vital component to the story.
  3. Contemporary Fiction – set in Canada and called Father Time. This is a different story that wrestles with current politics while telling the story of a cast of characters found on both sides of the conflicts of ideology. Most of the characters bare the names of my children, grandchildren, and friends in real life. The story has, in no way, any reality in terms of these characters. There is a bit of incidental nudity in the story.

Click on the links to see the stories as they unfold. The second mentioned story is at Patreon and requires that the reader be a patron of the site.

New Cyber Home

December 1st – This has always been a special day for me. There is something about this day, especially in the past few years, that has caused it to stand out even more. First, For the past forty plus years, this has traditionally been the day we set up our Christmas tree and set out all the decorations. Traditionally is an important word which does not mean “always.” This year, we set it up two days ago as we will be away from our prairie home for almost two weeks in December because of visiting family. As well, in the past, there have been two occasions when we were out of country, once to Cuba and once to Mexico during the Christmas season. The four years in China still had us setting up some sort of Christmas decoration so that we could feel a connection with all of our family and friends in North America and elsewhere. For the past six years, I have been an avid participant in NaNoWriMo. The last day of writing for that challenge is November 30th. December 1st then becomes the start of a more relaxed approach to the work-in-progress [WIP] that had begun on November 1st. Yesterday, I ended up with 52,893 words for that WIP. I imagine that before I finish that story, which I am already in the rewrite stage, there will easily be another 20,000 or more words added. It’s just the way it is when you return to the initial draft and find all sorts of holes and missing pieces. And, it’s all good. This year, December 1st also the first day this site is viewed from a new web-host provider. I wasn’t happy with the last provider and this one has already made a difference in my satisfaction levels. However, there had been one glitch in the process of shifting from one host to the next. I lost all the posts written since November 12th. This wasn’t the first time I have lost posts. Since few, if any, of my posts are vital, the losses are not life-changing. I won a new provider and I lost a few blog posts. And now, with a new month and a new provider, I am ready to continue my shared journey with you, my readers. On another note, I am using a different URL for this post while I wait for problems to be resolved on the /naturistlens/ page. Perhaps I will remain a this page – if it is necessary. All the old posts have been imported. The only thing missing would be the statistical history, which is of no interest to readers. I have had 150,000+ page views since 2016. The views from 2009-2016 are lost somewhere in time. But then again, are these things all that important?
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