Cyprus: Day 0 - Nov 2019…….The Prequel! And yes, it’s all about me!
Packing. Now as you know from previous holidays, packing ones suitcase has become a bit of an ordeal with clothing and other items being subjected to the hokey-cokey. They’re in, they’re out, they’re in again, and just when you think it’s safe to close your suitcase, out they come and in goes something you’ve found lurking in the far reaches of your wardrobe. This ritual as you well know may continue for hours, sometimes even days! So imagine my surprise when I started and finished my packing within the space of sixty seconds. It must be a world record. You see, once I’d packed all my pharmaceutical potions and lotions, pills and creams there was no room for anything else.....the fact was, I’d packed a pharmacy in my suitcase!
Let me explain. It all happened a few weeks ago whilst holding a yoga pose in front of the mirror. ‘Oh dear’ I thought..... ‘I’m looking a bit pasty. I need a bit of colour before my impending holiday to Cyprus to celebrate Pearls 50th birthday in less than three weeks time’. So having spoken to RH in the office (unfortunately I am unable to divulge her true identity but can assure you she is not your Royal Highness) who is always sporting a golden tan, she confided in me that she tops up her real life holiday in Turkey tan with a couple of sunbed sessions. Well, well, well......who’d have thought it. But don’t worry Becky, your secret is safe with me!
A few days later I signed up for a number of sunbed sessions, just enough to provide a base tan, purchased the accelerator enhancer lotion, had a few sessions and after session number four......OMG. What had happened to my body? Overnight, I seem to have metamorphosed from the perfect female form (okay, the jury’s out on that one) into a species yet to be identified by David Attenborough, with crimson red, very hot, blotchy, extremely sore and extremely itchy scaly skin. No area of skin had escaped this transformation from beauty to the beast, except that is, for my face, for which I was truly thankful. And, to make matters worse, it was Thursday morning and I had to go to work! Having downed a couple of in-date allergy tablets found at the back of the bathroom cabinet, smothered myself with moisturiser, wore loose clothing and, in a bid to liberate the boobs to ‘let the air circulate’ wore no brassier, I set off to the office. I think I must have spent the whole day with my hands beneath my upper garments (luckily I was wearing a shawl) massaging certain areas of my anatomy with my cold hands.....obviously trying to cool down my skin. It was no better the next day, even though I had used almost two tubes of aloe Vera and, to make matters worse I was out at a dinner party that night. I spent the whole evening sat in a chair being handed wet flannels by the host, Jon which adorned my very red chest! ( the flannels that is!). ‘You could cook an egg on there’. Oh yes, I was the butt of all jokes, I heard them all.........you certainly know who your friends are!
In Yeovil with Maice the following day a visit to the pharmacy was required. ‘Epsom Salts is what you need’ the pharmacist said, so purchasing a bag for £5.99 (extortionate for a bit of salt) I was looking forward to a nice long soak in the bath. Now I never have a bath, preferring to shower instead and of course I don’t have a plug in the bath so I had to endure another sleepless night of very itchy skin.
Sunday morning at 10am I bought a bath plug from Robert Dyas, got home, realised I’d left it on the counter and had to return to the shop........furious ! I wouldn’t of minded if it had been worthwhile but the instructions say to ‘pour into a bath of luke-warm water’. Luke-warm! It was freezing! How I endured the recommended twenty minutes I’ll never know but I emerged from the bathtub looking just the same as when I got in but now I was probably hypothermic! There was nothing else I could do....a visit to the doctors the next morning was top priority. Oh how embarrassing it was having to a) undress to show him the extent of my affliction and b) having to admit it was due to a sunbed. Bless him, he was very sympathetic and said it was contact dermatitis and prescribed all these lotions and stuff. I am happy to announce that on this holiday eve I feel a little better and not looking as bright and blotchy as I first was.
I believe there is a moral to this story. Let me know what it is so I can remember next time I decide to do something ridiculous at my age.........honestly, what’s the price of a tan? It’s cost me a fortune so far and I’m going to come back from Cyprus the palest I’ve ever been. I suppose I can say that I’m an English Rose......even if it is a red one!
On that note it’s off to bed. Picking Maice up at 4am tomorrow morning and it’s now midnight! Let’s hope we have a good travel day, I mean, let’s face it.....what could possibly go wrong?