Kiwi Skin Stories
“I’ve got fair skin. I’ve have freckles and moles. I have always tried to be careful in the sun, but I recall quite a few bad sunburns in my childhood – my lower back that was missed in the smearing of gooey suncream or my shoulders that the ocean washed clean.
It could be totally inaccurate remembering on my part, but for some reason my parents seemed fairly lax about the religious application of sunscreen. The reason I’m doubting it wasn’t just my memory, is because mine was the mother who topless sunbathed, slathered in coconut oil, or baby oil (or butter if there was nothing else available) at every chance she got. Being half Italian and quarter Maori, she mustn’t have realised that her children inherited their father’s fairer skin and were therefore rather susceptible to vicious rays of that ball of fire in the sky.
And yet, even with those memories vivid in my mind, there was a time in my early twenties when my longing to be brown overtook common sense. Back when bottled fake tanning products were far less effective than those available today. When $2 tanning sessions at the sunbeds in Los Angeles were just too much to resist and I frequented such establishments in efforts to become bronzed like every other 20-something in Hollywood!
Having been so careless, I now am at increased risk of melanoma so I need to be super cautious of any changes I notice in my skin. I want to be around for a good while yet. Grandkids please!”