How are family took to us changing our lifestyle.
When Mark and Samantha Taylor decided in 2006 they were going to set up a naturist resort in Kefalonia Greece, they were initially worried about telling family and friends hoping for a positive response. But they didn’t stop to think the impact this would have on family that were unfamiliar with naturism.
Here, Simon Sketchley, Samantha’s Dad tells us how he felt about his introduction to naturism:
‘Forget bungee jumping, sky diving and swimming with sharks. These extreme challenges pale into insignificance when faced with the prospect of exposing my 55 year old untanned flesh in front of my grown up daughters and a plethora of equally naked strangers.
When Samantha and new son-in-law first came to me voicing their dream of opening a resort in Greece – I thought great!! – Holidays in the sun. Then the catch – naturist. Well, my head made a quick U turn, losing my daughter forever.
But when the call for help comes from one’s offspring, we all dive into the fires of hell to help them – wouldn’t we?
The implication became more apparent as I sat on the plane. I had not seen my daughter naked since she was 6 when bath time duties dwindled away. As for her seeing me naked!
On landing, my worst nightmare arrived. The resort was full and everyone was gathered by the pool. Stars worry about walking down stairs on stage, imagine walking down the same stairs naked??? As I stood at the top step, I held my breath and took the plunge.
Heart racing, blood pumping, I was greeted with handshakes and “good morning”, “nice to meet you” in various languages. No one laughed, no-one pointed and in short, the world did not end!!
Why are we so afraid of nudity? Why are we so worried about exposing our puny bodies? I found it a liberating experience and one which I have now experienced on many occasions.
Of the “100 things to do before I die” – this has got to be top of your list.’
Simon thoroughly enjoys his naturist holidays now and what a difference it makes to Mark and Samantha that they can enjoy the family visiting and fully taking part. Samantha recalls:
‘I remember Dad having his long lazy baths on a Sunday night and taking him a glass of wine or cup of tea, so I wasn’t too concerned about seeing him naked, but I was aware that I was asking him to do quite a big thing. My Dad is the sort of person to take on any challenge thrown at him though, so I wasn’t surprised he excepted it. My sister however, I was used to being in changing rooms with her and was not worried at all, but I didn’t know what she would think and fully expected her to be very cautious. But within seconds of inviting her on a naturist holiday with us there was not an ounce of hesitation.’
Here’s how Caroline, Samantha’s sister felt:
‘The naturist holidays have become so much more than I expected, when I got the first phone call from Samantha asking if I wanted to go. I don’t think I really hesitated much, but I was at a stage in my life when I wanted to try new things and what better way to do that, than with the support of my family? Having done 4 years of life-drawing with my art studies, I wasn’t shy about seeing other people nude so it was only my own appearance that would be the barrier.
My first experience of naturism was anxiously walking to the pool in my bikini bottoms. I thought, ‘this is okay…I can cope with this’. So I whipped off my pants and swiftly dived into the beautiful blue water. It was great, so relaxing. The only problem I had was that I couldn’t find my sunglasses to read my book on the sun bed afterwards… Then it dawned on me, I’d dived in with them on my head because I was so preoccupied with worry!
A good few years have passed since my nervous introduction to naturism and it’s been taken over by a craving to get back to Kefalonia whenever possible. Apart from being able to relax by the pool without worrying about a wet swimming costume and visiting my sister, what really draws me back to Vassiliki is meeting the other guests who are always friendly and genuine. We have a great balance of time on our own as well as group socials, like the on-site barbecue evening, where we can all get to know each other better.
Although we have yet to manage to all be on a naturist holiday together, we got a taster when the family all stayed at Samantha’s resort for Dad’s wedding. After a friend had floated all the lilies in the pool the three of us couldn’t resist going for a sneaky skinny dip whilst everyone was upstairs getting ready for the service. We laughed a lot and still do whenever we are in each other’s company naked or clothed!’
Samantha just wants to finish by saying – ‘Go on, tell your families, you might be pleasantly surprised and get to enjoy a great naked future together with your family, not in secret!’