For someone who is not at all fit and hates exercise, I have just completed my first ever triathlon. OK it was only a mini one (400m swim, 10km cycle and 4km walk/run), but my personal goal was to finish and to not finish last!
There were 645 women competing as individuals (as well as teams and mother & daughter combinations) – 800 women in total, most of them a lot younger and fitter than me. At 68, I was at the top end of my age division of 60-69 year olds.
The weather was perfect with hardly any wind throughout, and the water at Pilot Bay was warm. My times were within what I expected for each split, and the overall time would have been a few minutes faster if I hadn’t lost my bike in the first transition!
My overall time was 1:29:14 (I had reckoned on 1.5 hours therefore perfect) and my overall place was 619th. In my age division I came 20th out of 23. It doesn’t seem that great, but to me I was well pleased that I achieved my goal of finishing and not coming last!
Considering my ongoing foot injury and knee problem, and that I walked not ran the last leg as per the instructions of my orthopaedic surgeon, I was certainly pleased with myself. Goal achieved. Bucket list ticked off!
While I am congratulating myself, I also found out this week that I had won a writing competition with a $250 prize. The theme was ‘The Turning Point’ and it was to be a true story of an event which changed your life (ie a turning point). So I wrote about something which was sure a turning point in my life – the day I first became a naturist. The judges both immediately chose me as the winner without any argument, whereas they had to discuss the rest of the finalists’ stories.
The winning and highly commended stories will be published as a Freelance anthology in March and it will also be available as a free downloadable PDF from the Freelance Writers Helping Writers website soon. I’ll let you know the link when I get it, so you can read my story if you want to. It is a good one for anyone who is wavering about becoming a social naturist (like me over 40 years ago)!
We have had three very successful events this year so far. Read about our Pyes Pa event on page 3, Col’s account of our Opoutere weekend is in his column below, and we also broke our attendance record for our February hot pool night (see page 4). Also, read about our trip to Northland on page 3.
Please note that Col and I will be in Aussie for the next hot pool night. Please still come along (we need good numbers) and let me know if you are coming by 24 March. You may not get another reminder.
WOW, what a great weekend it was at Opoutere. The sea, surf, salt and sand all combined to benefit the body and soul when taken nude in large doses (emphasis on the nude).
Numerous people caught waves on their boogie boards taking them right to the water’s edge – a great feeling. A couple of members had a lot of fun entertaining us with their kites in the strong wind.
The fishermen (and women) were up early to catch the tide. One caught a good snapper while another caught a large trevally. There were plenty of fishy stories of the 'ones that got away', including a possible stingray which took one fisher’s line, ‘hook, line and sinker’.
It was the best turnout we have had. To fit eight large motorhomes (one over 9m long), three medium-sized motorhomes and one tent into a space that is normally allocated to eight sites was no mean feat, but it worked out fine and we had a complete corral. Also we had three large caravans parked just over the creek. All up 15 camps.
We still had space for the gazebo for friendly happy hours (or two) and a scrumptious pot luck BBQ dinner – so many different salads appeared from nowhere. Thanks to one member who brings his gas BBQ every year along with his yummy apple sponge and cream.
We also had space to set up the Kubb. The Kubb has proven to be very popular this summer as people get 'hooked' on the game. I overheard someone say they must try and beat someone else after they had had a few drinks – such is the keenness. Some people were even playing after sunset under star, candle and torch light! True dedication!
The weather was wonderful – mainly sunny and hot, although a bit of light overcast lead to a little unwanted sunburn.
Will we do it all again next year? Too right and bigger and brighter!
HOT POOL NIGHT Monday 26 March 5-9pm
NOTE: It is important to let me know if you are coming, not only in case of cancellation but also as the chef needs to know how many are coming for catering purposes. So, let me know please or you might miss out on a meal!
Our next hot pool night will be on 26 March, so mark your diaries now. If you need any more information contact me.
Please let me know if you are coming by Saturday 24 March. You may not get another reminder.
As some of the members attending our hot pool nights are new to naturism, please respect their privacy by sticking to your gender-specific changing room (ie men in men’s, ladies in ladies). Sometimes, as seasoned naturists, we forget what it was like for our first time in a naturist setting. These newbies deserve a chance to disrobe and dress in a space where they feel comfortable. Thanks.
Campout in Pyes Pa
I don’t like talking about the weather, ‘cos everyone always does, but with the summer we have had, I have to mention how lucky we have been for our events. The weather Gods were certainly looking after us for this year’s camping weekend at this beautiful property at Pyes Pa. The park-like grounds really lend themselves to a naturist gathering which started on Friday evening with happy hour as people arrived to set up their tents and motorhomes.
After dinner we all relaxed in the gazebo until dark, oblivious of the storm buffeting Rotorua with flooding and thunderstorms, only about 50km away. We got no rain at all!
The next morning a group from a local life art drawing group came along to sketch some of the members. Other people played Kubb or petanque. Once again, although the wind was gusty, we got no rain.
After happy hour we had a shared pot luck dinner then gathered around the fire waiting for dark. Next, we watched an outdoor movie 'Going in Style' which was very entertaining.
Sunday was similar weather (still no rain) so our own naked chef cooked everyone a big breakfast of bacon and eggs, hash browns and baked beans.
A masseuse came along to give massages to several members while everyone else played the games and socialised.
After lunch we all relaxed until it was time to take down the gazebo and head home - although no-one was in a hurry to do that!
Once again thanks to our hosts for allowing us to camp in such a pristine area for our annual event. See you next year - same time, same place!
Northland Naturists twin event
Col and I headed to Northland via Wellington. Yeah I know that’s a round-about way of getting to Cape Reinga but we had a mission to complete in Wellington and the Northland Naturists tempted us with two successive weekend activities the week after. It was too good an offer to refuse so we combined the two areas into a month-long trip.
We started the Northland excursion at Uretiti Beach. We were there just after a long weekend – just as well as the managers told us 500 people had left that morning! It was very windy, but Col managed a swim in the warm water. While there we met up with two other naturist couples who were also heading to the Northland Naturists weekend at…
The emu farm.
What an experience! And what amazing hosts. These people have the most amazing life, travelling the world on their huge motorbikes while also breeding and farming emus. They even hatch their own emu eggs. Their daughter also lives on the property and has a stall selling her own amazing handcrafts.
We were shown a huge paddock where the two couples we met at Uretiti were already set up and then taken on a walk around the lovely property, bordering a tributary of the Rangaunu Harbour. The emus are farmed for their meat, oil and also for their feathers, which are sold to provide feathers to make korowai, a Maori feather cloak used in ceremonial events. One thing I didn’t know was that emus have double feathers, producing two feathers from one follicle.
Of course, I mustn’t forget the other host – Carol, a very obliging friendly emu, who has the run of the fenced property. Carol loves people and obligingly sat down so we could stroke her – an amazing experience. Carol was raised with the other emus but chose to become friends with humans and is very docile.
There were five campervans (10 members), plus another couple in the on-site caravan (all belonging to both Northland and BOP Naturists). It was a shame that there weren’t more from the north present, but it seemed to be a weekend when they all had other things crop up. But we still had a good time, playing Kubb, relaxing and some even had a swim in the river at the back of the property. A relaxing float down the river to a picnic table was a good way to cool off (so I’m told)!
Each night, our hosts invited us all for happy hour at the house, where they run an Airbnb. A Dutch couple were staying and luckily, they were naturists too. So we all got together both nights. On Saturday, we shared a pot luck meal. Our host showed us his skill with a parrilla, an Argentinian grill which uses the heat from hot embers to cook the food. It took a while to prepare the embers, but it was certainly a more natural way of cooking our meat. We even tried some emu sausages to taste (yum – fat free).
A BIG version of ‘Pick-up-sticks’ appeared which was fun but definitely isn’t a game you should play after a few drinks! So thank you to our hosts for a couple of great nights in the Far North.
Naturists are welcome to visit their property,and will receive discounted camping rates. plenty of space for nude bathing. Contact me for contact details.
We had beautiful weather while there and also for much of the following week, during which Col and I travelled to Cape Reinga where we stayed overnight at the Tapotupotu DOC camp. What a lovely little bay!
We also stayed at Maitai Bay DOC camp, a large campsite located between two bays. Then the rain started!
We had planned to go out on the arranged boat trip around the Bay of Islands the following Saturday, but the weather put paid to that, with heavy rain and strong winds. So we cut short our holiday and came back home a few days early.
But it was a great time checking out some lovely beaches in the Far North. Maybe next year we will head back up that way again – anyone keen to join us?
Col has filled you in on our weekend at Opoutere Beach in his column on page 2. Once again we were lucky with the weather which was fine and sunny between two cyclones. All I can add is that we had a fantastic time with a great bunch of people and that we will be doing it all again next year!
Hot pool night
What a great night - we topped 50 members at our last hot pool night. It was a warm evening and even with darkness descending earlier than the past few months, people stayed on and enjoyed the camaraderie of other members until well after dark.
This time we had 11 new members come along. They were made most welcome by the older members and will, I am sure, be back again next month. The positive atmosphere among the group was evident at this event, with everybody chatting amongst themselves all night.
The food was great thanks to our hosts expertise and organisation. The company was great. And the turnout was amazing showing how much everyone enjoys this fun naturist event.
Naturist road trip around Taranaki and Manawatu…
Our members left Auckland early on the 30th December, heading to Taranaki and then onto Manawatu, with the intention of visiting the sun clubs in the area. We also intended to do some tramping and cycling.
The sun was shining when we arrived at the Taranaki Naturist Club, so we soon had our gear off and checked out the club grounds with its wonderful pool. We were made very welcome by all the locals who lived there. It was quite peaceful apart from the odd generator blaring occasionally, as the Taranaki club has no 240v power, which we found a bit inconvenient. But we loved the quietness and welcoming people.
We went there thinking that if we didn’t like it we would carry on to somewhere else but ended up staying four nights including New Year’s Eve. The local Maori had a rahui on the land leading down to the beach, so we couldn't go for a walk and explore the local coastline.
We went to New Plymouth’s ‘Festival of Lights’ in Pukekura Park in along with many others. It was quite spectacular with many lighting extravaganzas. We also managed a 5.3km tramp around Lake Mangamahoe (New Plymouth's water supply).
Another day we cycled from near the Te Rewa Rewa Bridge into New Plymouth and further along to the port and back again continuing through to Bell Block, a total of 24.5km. Of course, these tramps and bike rides all had to be done dressed, but so be it. If you have a boat, the small lake near Te Rewa Rewa Bridge is brilliant for waterskiing, jetski and biscuit riding.
We travelled down the coast via Opunake. The mountain (Mt Taranaki) didn't cooperate and show itself except briefly, just as we were leaving for Manawatu.
Heading further south we wanted to collect some driftwood for the garden and suggested Himatangi Beach, near the Manawatu Naturist Club. We arrived at the club and were welcomed at happy hour. The pool was fantastic (26oC). We spent the next 3 nights there. Very relaxing!
We left Manawatu feeling very refreshed but certainly didn't manage much bike or hike work. We headed back to Wanganui as it was suggested that Castlecliff beach had plenty of driftwood and was the easiest to access. We managed to drag and carry 10 pieces of various-sized bits of wood into the motorhome, which we stowed under the bed.
We travelled through to Waikato Outdoor Society for the night to try and beat the other million Aucklanders going home the following morning, completing a very refreshing, relaxing week away at two clubs we hadn't been to previously which we would recommend to others for a quiet escape.
I received this from a member who trips around the world often…
I booked an Airbnb in Kuching, Sarawak which is part of Malaysia. It’s got a pool and reckons it’s close to nature but as you know Malaysia and many parts of the East are rather ‘clothed’. Anyway, after I had booked, I was reading their ‘House Manual’ which is only available after booking and it says:
Welcome home. If you are naturist let us know. We could arrange a private nudist paradise for you.
I then read in someone’s review that it was ‘clothing optional’ in some parts and in the pool – perfect!
So let’s see, maybe there are little enclaves if you hunt them out.
Note: There is now the Malaysian Naturist Federation which is affiliated to the International Naturist Federation. So naturism is slowly coming in Malaysia - Glenne
FROM MY INBOX…
Results of the Naturist Action Group’s 2017 photo competition…
The results of the Naturist Action Group’s latest photo competition have been announced. Take a look at the link below to see that both Col and I were ‘highly commended’, ‘commended’ and also in the ‘best of the rest’. But unfortunately, not the winners this time. Thanks to my willing models for the last couple of years.
International Skinny Dipping Day – 14 July 2018 (Northern hemisphere)
Bruce from Thailand sent me this invitation. If you are going to Thailand or live there, you might like to join them at Phuan Naturist Village…
How many people can we get in Phuan’s pool? We need to show the world of naturism that Thailand can do it! We hope to fill 17x8m pool with people. You don’t have to know how to swim. We will have floats and lifeguards at the ready.
The event is at Phuan Village. No day visitor charge and 10% discount on rooms.
Go to their web page www.PhuanNaturistVillage.com for more details about the resort. For reservations email PhuanNaturistVillage@gmail.com
Individuals or teams of up to four register for the swim. Once you've registered, you encourage your family, friends and colleagues to sponsor you via a give-a-little page. Minimum sponsorship required is $300 for an individual or $1000 for a team of up to four.
After listening to BOP Naturists members concerns about this event at our Pyes Pa weekend (cost, having to fund raise for the money etc), I rang the Breast Cancer Support group to discuss what was talked about. As a long-time naturist and also someone who has done the Sydney Skinny, I feel I have a good handle on the topic.
Here is their reply:
Further to our telephone conversation a couple of weeks ago about the Nude Dude Swim we have coming up in March and more specifically the cost of entering the swim.
We’ve had a chat about this. We always appreciate feedback because it is helpful for us to hear other people’s views.
As an organisation this is the first time the Nude Dude Swim has been promoted and we have chosen the “sponsorship” model in order to raise funds. We are a small organisation and so fundraising is always a challenge for us. In comparison the Sydney Skinny Swim is a large event with significant sponsorship behind it.
We’re not sure how things will look if we run this event next year, but your thoughts will contribute to our thinking and planning.
Your comments that people may feel embarrassed and might be put off doing the swim when they have to ask families and friends for sponsorship is another valid point, as is if there was a smaller entry fee more people may be inclined to enter. These comments will also be taken into account in our thinking and planning if we run the event again. Kind regards Jill Forlong, Breast Cancer Support Services Trust
So thanks for your comments everyone. It will be interesting to see how the event pans out. Glenne
Northland Naturists Summer Sports Spectacular – 9-11 March at Uretiti Beach, Northland
This invitation has come in from Northland Naturists. Please reply directly if you are interested in going along to this event…
Come & join us for a fun, clothes-free weekend in the beautiful north for our 4th annual Sports Spectacular. Various sports/games will be featured with the emphasis on fun. We welcome supporters, cheerleaders and anyone who wants to have a good time at the beach. To help defray costs there will be a $5 entry fee and raffles so bring some change. There will also be sausages & bread for sale for lunch on Saturday. Registration on the beach at 9.30am Saturday 10th March. BYO shared BBQ Saturday night at the Uretiti DOC Camp Ground. Past years have been great so let’s make this one even better! For more information contact email@example.com.
Special offer for BOP Naturists from our Hot Pool hosts Beauty Spa
I received this special deal for members who would like to be pampered on our hot pool nights…
Welcome to the spa at the Hot Pools. We now have a beautiful relaxing spa where we offer many beauty therapy treatments.
On your monthly Monday meal and soak in the pools night, come and enjoy a discounted add-on treatment of ½ hour for only $25.
We offer a choice of
- MINI PEDICURE
- BACK MASSAGE
- HOT STONE BACK MASSAGE
- EXPRESS HYDRATING FACIAL
Our qualified and experienced therapists will be here to greet you and give you an amazing mini-treatment in our beautiful relaxing environment.
Let us know in advance if you wish to add one of these treatments to your usual $25 swim/meal deal at the hot pools.
Call 0225433913 to book. Looking forward to meeting you.
As I will be away next time, please book yourself in directly if you would like one of these treatments. Just make sure you tell them you are with BOP Naturists to get the special discounted rate. Glenne
FROM THE INTERNET
THE SYDNEY SKINNY IS ON AGAIN!!
A couple of members are joining Col and me at this event which will be held at Cobblers Beach in Sydney on 11 March 2018. Is anyone else keen to join us? There is still time to enter. More information on http://www.thesydneyskinny.com.au/
NATCON 2018 – NATURIST ASSOCIATION OF THAILAND’s 7th ANNUAL GATHERING 4-6 May 2018
NATCON is the largest annual gathering of naturists in Asia and has been held in Thailand every year since 2010. This year it will be held at the Worawee Resort & Spa in Kaeng Krachan only 3 hours drive from Bangkok. For more information go to http://thailandnaturist.com/
Note: NATCON is only for NAT and/or INF members.
The saga at Alexandria Bay near Noosa goes on. This from the Free Beaches Australia Facebook page in January…
Yesterday a group of FBA members had an appointment to talk to the new Senior (Police) Sergeant Ben Carroll at Noosa police station. Present from the FBA were Mark & Anita Hayter and Tony Gullock (a FBA member who lives in the area). We asked Sergeant Carroll what his official position was in regard to nudists at Alexandria Bay. He said that it had not changed since Senior Sergeant Steve McWright.
He would not be outwardly targeting nudists but it was against the law for males to expose their genitals when nude and if there was a complaint from the public he would have to address that complaint. He said that if his police saw nudists they would simply inform them that nudity was illegal and ask them to cover up. If the nudists obeyed the officer, then that would be the end of the matter but if they didn't cover up then the police would have to book the male under the Summary Offences Act.
He said that police did not see the genuine nudists as a problem generally. He said they were more concerned with sexual activity in the dunes and bushes. We gave him our brochure and he gave us his card. He was happy to hear that we were happy to cooperate with police and report any unsavoury activity on the beach to police.
If you have any friends or family who would like to come along to an event to meet us and join in the fun, please bring them along. Children are especially welcome.