The correlation between country and coverage.
Disclaimer: This article refers to particular fashion choices. It is in no way judgemental of persons living or dead, any species or phylum. It is funny in its observation. If you are easily offended, go read the Post.
While it looks like long term travel is all things glamorous, there comes a time in anyone’s journey where you hit a wall. Overnight buses, on-going negotiations, laundry, sourcing points of interest, booking, writing, researching, relaying information, schooling and continuous movement means you start recognizing the need for a break from the trip you are on. Ours hit about 2.5 months in.
The choice for down time came in 2 weeks on a Uruguayan beach, filled with all manner of vacationers over South American summer holidays. They came from Brazil, Argentina, Chile, a few Americans, 15 hostels of internationals, and apparently one family from Canada.
I was talking to my lovely wife about some pressing matter, and as I looked down the beach, I discovered that there was nowhere safe to direct my gaze. Bodies on display everywhere in various stages of undress. Of course I was horrified, to the point where a group of college co-eds walked by and I forgot what I was talking to Jenn about.
I was that scared, I tell ya.
A curious thing to observe, it was at that time we came up with a theory about fashion and nationality. The hypothesis was, we could determine where someone was from based on their base coverage. After days of intensive investigation, these are our findings regarding peoples behindings…
The name itself is synonymous with an aggressive technique of hair removal, and this is a pre-requisite for anyone sporting swimwear from this country. If you have any spare fabric lying around, send it to Brazil. Apparently, they have a serious shortage of cloth in the country, literally none to spare for bathing trunks. Think of them before tossing away those socks with a hole in the toe, it could be enough for 8 pairs of bottoms.
It might be a show of wealth, a nod to being ‘the paris of SA’, but the whale tale is in play and on full display. No cheeky coverage at all, but a wider waist wrap as if to say, “Here I am, ti amor, look and be amazed!”. You will find most Argentinians strolling the beach with their Mate gorde and requisite hot water canteen to go with it. Oh, and did you know Messi is from Argentina? Don’t screw that up. Unrelated, but important, apparently. To not know this would be considered insulting when talking to someone from Argentina. A sentiment we found out first hand.
Like their southern cousins, but with less fabric and still a cheeky bunch. It might be a geographical relationship, I should probably return and study in depth! For you, my dedicated readers, I will do this thing…
Unless from Cali, the general choice is a 2 piece, full bottom but with enough tease to catch an eye. You can tell North Americans because they are looking in awe at all the South Americans, impressed with their zest for life and minimal laundry. They are comfortable on the beach, sure, but they render invisible when standing beside a Brazilian.
Perhaps it’s being so used to the sun, those who were there from down under carried more of a boy short meets peep cheek style down under. And every single one of them looked ready for a beach volleyball jaunt or some killer waves.
This was an interesting phenomenon as we found Europeans cared much less about the bottoms (albeit pretty free as in the end zone as well) as for the most part they were more intent on being topless than sunning the lower half.
The deal breakers
Hippies: they seem to go with a hodgepodge of fabrics, piled high with pachouli and somehow able to make dreadlocks attractive. On the ladies. History has shown that on the fellas you just present as unwashed. I am looking at you Jason!
Generally, we are in planetary alignment. Board shorts rule, with flowers, cartoon characters, pot plants or just plain ol colours. Of course there will always be a few lads who just saw Daniel Craig’s surf scene and thought, I can pull that off. And always there is the one Gentlemen, of medium to advanced years, who puts it all out there in a marble smuggler. Immediate response is this joke: What do you find between an old mans nuts? His toes!
This tongue-in-cheek commentary came as part of a conversation in which we admired the body confidence women carried from other countries.
Followed this with a question of “when did we get so uptight”?
We’re not, nor should you be.
As Donna Barker said, ‘if you aren’t laughing, you aren’t doing it right’.
Jenn, Chris, Spencer and Lauren are a family from Canada who sold their house and travelling the globe to teach their kids to become citizens of the world. Their ethos is to support local, be compassionate, raise awareness of key issues around the world and pushing each other so far out of their comfort zone that there is no zone left.
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