Oh Hello Again British Summer …

I have returned from a week in Cyprus, the weather back home is, shall we say, chilly.  Of course I made the fools error of thinking because it’s sunny and baking hot in Cyprus, it will be the same come home time at Gatwick.  In fact if truth be told I didn’t even consider the weather back home in ye olde England.  I got off the plane, clad in teeny tiny denim shorts and a strappy top.  The result –  I shiver my way through Gatwick and out to the car park to complete the journey home, nursing a minor case of hypothermia.

But to be honest it’s to be expected, this is the UK after all.  If we didn’t have the weather to complain about life just would NOT be fun!  In fact bad weather and nice queue is enough to set any Brit off on a tyrannical rant about the injustice of it all, myself included.    But if we consider just for a second the possibility of the UK being 35 degrees centigrade every day with blazing sunshine, nothing would ever get done.  We would all switch our complaining to the heat rather than the rain, hail, sleet and whatever else we’ve been subjected to this July.  So while a bit more sunshine would be nice, I’m kind of glad as sunshine for us brits is a treat not a right, it makes the whole experience feel much more like a true holiday!

Cooling down in a tomb

My reasoning is based on last weeks trip to Cyprus.  Every day was scorching, at least 35 degrees and not a cloud in the sky.  I am not one for just sitting on the beach or by the pool, mainly for the reason that I am pasty white with freckles – the perfect recipe for a beetroot red sunburn after a mere half an hour outside.  I am one more for exploring the local area, seeing the sights etc etc.  And I have to say a week in Paphos  delivered.  The Tombs of the Kings, the medieval fort and the mosaics – all of which were a thrill for (and I don’t like to admit it) a history geek such as myself!

The Tombs of the kings are in fact not ‘tombs of the kings’ rather ‘tombs of government officials’.  Set on a piece of coastal desert and carved into the rock, you can imagine the heat.  It comes to something when you would rather sit in a tomb, a place of death, than in the sun to escape the heat.  Of course my snow white skin was absorbing the heat (even though I’m not sure that is scientifically correct), my thighs were chaffing (because unfortunately I was not gifted with airbrushed supermodel legs) and my hair was making my neck hot.  And I could feel that complaining energy coming.  Having done nothing but moan that it was cold back home and ‘why didn’t we have any sun?’ I was about to fulfil my British stereotype and begin complaining about what I could, the heat.  But I thought to myself right there and then, ‘I’m enjoying this’, ‘these tombs are interesting’, ‘why complain?’  And the same goes for the mosaics, the fort and the various other sights of Paphos.

Tombs carved into the rock

The sun and the heat was all part of the experience, it made it a true holiday.  But back home, our weather is all part of the British experience.  Maybe it’s not sipping cocktails on the beach or by the pool, but that’s no ones reality, well not a regular person at least!  I couldn’t imagine my normal job behind the bar and waiting on tables being particularly enjoyable in 35 degrees of heat.  And of course it’s given me something to complain about, now I’m sat in a cardigan shivering, having returned home from a scorching Cypriot paradise.  I joke of course …

 Follow me on twitter: @LucyBarclay1

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The Double Bum Effect! The Horror of Bikini Shopping …

It’s got to that time of year again when the sun starts to shine, albeit intermittently.  Now I am willing to accept that the temperature has barely increased to above 14ºC, and I had to de-ice my car this morning – But in my mind its still summer, or at least the beginning of.

We may have only had a mere 3 days of sunshine, but this is the weather in my mind (one can dream)

And yes although it pains to me to admit it, I am one of those people that is a bit too keen.  The sun comes out and to me the only thing to do is replace the coat for a light cardigan, and the jeans in favour of shorts.  However this does usually mean I’m sat shivering in corner, while everyone else is enjoying their day – perhaps they’ll be wearing the jeans, hat and scarf I wish I was wearing.  At least if I was wearing that I’d be warm.

But as the sun does start to rear its head, my first thoughts are bikini shopping.  Now I’ll browse numerous shops and websites for that perfect swimming ensemble.  Yet never does the image on the model quite live up to my expectations once I’m wearing it myself.

Current Favourite, African Bandeau Bikini, Topshop £26

I’m not overweight and have never been overweight.  I’m a size 8 yet unfortunately I have been blessed with a rather large derriere. And while this does not result in calamity on an everyday basis, bikini shopping is something quite different.

But firstly to illustrate the sheer size of my backside, not long ago I was walking down my own road, albeit I was wearing a body-con skirt but in my defence I was heading into town for a night out.  I’m just minding my business until I hear the horn of a car go, I turn round only to be greeted by a very considerate gentlemen.  So considerate in fact he had taken the time to climb half way out of a moving car’s window to yell pointing at me, ‘look at the back-end on that!’  I’m still none the wiser as to whether that was a compliment being given to my ‘back-end’ or not.

When it comes to the all important summer swimwear choice I am drawn in by the various patterns, tribal, aztec (although I’m convinced that’s the same thing as tribal) floral, stripy etc etc.  However why oh why do these shops not consider that perhaps some people have a bum? Bikinisets generally come in sizes 8, 10, 12 etc.  But why is it so hard to find separates with that same print you’ve fallen in love with in the sets?  Why can’t I buy a size 8 top and a 10, perhaps even a 12 for the bottom?  Now being an A cup on top usually isn’t a problem for fit, but having an above average size backside is.  But of course you can bet if the bikini fits like a dream on the bottom, its somewhat gaping on top.  Therefore I am usually one of those people that have to sneakily change the bottoms for a larger size, in fear of what I call the double bum.

Now the double bum is not the best look, especially when exposed on the beach.  Like I’ve said the top half usually is a perfect fit.  However the bottoms … no no no!  Too tight, normally exposing a little too much flesh for my liking and cutting in at all the wrong places. Creating what is usually, an unsightly bulge or bulges to be precise.  And to demonstrate further what I mean, this illustration should clear up any misunderstanding as to what the double bum is…

The double bum effectNow my bum is big, and I tell myself Kim Kardashian has this same genetic makeup.  And while that’s true, the double bum effect doesn’t quite have the sex appeal of a sculpted Kardashian posterior!

Of course you never see the likes of Jennifer Aniston or Katy Perry with this problem.  But of course they’ve got an army of dieticians, personal trainers etc etc.  But whilst focusing on these celebrities an the perfectly formed backsides, lustworthy legs and sculpted abs I think we all forget that that comes at a price.  Now I am not someone who is going to feel satisfied having eaten a handful of granola for breakfast, a bowl of soup for lunch and wait for it … An entire lettuce leaf for dinner.

I can’t be doing with that, I just try and eat healthily and try and exercise (even if thought of running makes want to crawl up into a hole and die).  I don’t want to be pumping iron at the gym everyday.  I just want to be healthy but enjoy myself, so if that means that a bar of chocolate now and then or a bowl of ice-cream is banned.  I’d rather keep the double bum.

 Follow me on twitter: @LucyBarclay1

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