When I left the States, my scale said I weighed 96 pounds.
That number, of course, is a ridiculous falsehood. I weigh that plus the weight of a small child, which doesn’t paint a pleasant mental picture as we enter swimsuit season.
I didn’t bother to buy a new scale when mine went haywire because I didn’t mind it being wrong. The only time it caused me problems was the night before my overseas flight. Some of my girlfriends came over to bid me farewell. They helped me carry my duffel bags to my trunk. Then they gave me sound advice to do some rearranging to distribute the weight better. It was nearly midnight when my friend Jennifer walked down the street to her house and brought back her scale. We stood in the street by my car with the scale and the luggage and repacked, and she was the only one brave enough to step on the scale with the bags and announce how much everything weighed.
Since I’ve been in Croatia, I haven’t stepped foot near a scale, but I know I’m a little lighter than when I arrived. I don’t know how much weight I’ve lost, but it’s probably a good 10 to 15 pounds, just from walking and riding my bike everywhere. Still, I’m in no danger of becoming a 96-pound weakling.
Now that it’s summertime, I am thinking more about my size and what I should wear to the beach. The European women all wear bikinis. I mean, all of them, no matter their age or their size. And they don’t seem to care whether they have beach bodies. That also goes for the men of all ages and sizes who seem to think Speedos are appropriate.
I am 46 years old. I haven’t entertained the idea of wearing a bikini since I was about 16. Even then, I didn’t like to show my belly.
Here, my go-to black, one-piece, soccer-mom swimsuit is a dead giveaway that I am an American tourist. Sarge says I should blend in with the locals and wear a bikini. I told him he is the one who will have to look at my belly rolls. And I am not encouraging him to adopt the Speedo look.
There is something freeing about the idea of wearing whatever you want to the beach and not being self-conscious about it. Maybe it is the European way. Or maybe it will grow on me with age, and the older I get, the less I will care about what other people think.