Monday, May 30, 2011

a poor substitute (lyn)

Summer is here.  It’s hot.  The city has emptied out.  And I am pale.

I resolve to get a tan before graduation.  I know it’s bad for me.  I know all the health risks.  I know I should be doing everything to preserve my skin.  But really, I look so much better with color.

I go through my pre-beach rituals.  I put Clarins SPF 15 Sun Wrinkle Control Cream on my face.  I still have two half-used containers from last summer.  I read somewhere that these expire six months after opening.   I once heeded this advice, but lack of money makes me more careless.  Next I apply a presumably expired Clarins 30 SPF Sunscreen Stick on and around my lips, under my eyes, and on my nose and forehead.  This, too, is from last summer.  And finally, I spray all my remaining exposed skin with Coppertone Sport 30SPF (this at least is new).

I pack a bag with money, a big towel, my phone, prescription sunglasses, my book, and a paper.

I take out a little insulated bag for my lunch.  Cold water.  Grapes.  A plum.  A bagel thin, mustard and prosciutto.  15 Pringle Lights, and an ice pack.

It takes me longer to get ready now than it will by August.  By then, I’ll be a pro.

I don’t have a beach chair in the city, but I plan to buy one in the next few days.  Gotta have a chair.  I leave my house, and walk a few blocks to John Jay Park.  The only green there is on the trees.  There is a nice, big, open sprinkler fountain, but no one over the age of five is in it.

I have my lunch in the sweltering heat.  I read the paper.  I stretch out on a park bench.  I last an hour.

I miss the beach.

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