Today was hazy. The sun came out for about twenty minutes. It was such a joy but as my friend, Cindy and I we drove down the street we left the sunny patch and drove back into the haze. We saw a woman, in a long purple coat, with huge round sunglasses and an umbrella, standing in the slush by the side of the road. Was she afraid of the sun, which wasn't out anyway? It wasn't snowing, not raining, why the umbrella? Why the sunglasses?
That started me thinking about summer and about the sun and all it gives to us and then I thought of my high school days and my vanity and remembered this tiny saga.
It was the end of summer and I had neglected to work on my suntan. I wasn't pasty or anything, I had olive skin and tanned nicely but just wasn't the perfect golden color I wanted to be for school. The last Saturday of the summer I spent, lying on a chase lounge, baby oil slathered on every visible body part. I turned at intervals, like a barbecuing chicken on a spit. With each turn I could see my skin getting darker. I was pleased. I think I even dozed a bit, but woke up in time to turn to the other side. When the sun was too low to give any more sun-tanning-rays and I was sufficiently brown I went in to shower. I turned, picturing myself starting school on Monday, healthy looking. Nice and golden.
Wait! What is that? A leaf from the apple tree was plastered to my back. Not down low, where it wouldn't show but up high, where it would. I picked it off. Ack! White skin, surrounded by beautifully browned skin. So much for vanity. So much for the perfect tan.
As I think back on it, trying to put a positive spin on it, I think I will be glad it wasn't a rhubarb leaf. And glad it wasn't permanent.
Of course, at my age, I wonder why I cared then. Time puts a different perspective on things.