That one time…
Most of the world’s best stories start with the same four words: “Remember that one time…?”. Say these four words out loud and I’ll bet that your mind fills in the blank the same way google suggested answers pop up in your web browser. This column is dedicated to some of my “that one time” moments. Some (most) of these moments are embarrassing, some are hilarious, some are truly moving, and all of them are truly memorable.
That one time I was naked in Nafplio
Archaeological evidence, and this video by Buzzfeed’s the Try Guys, have proven that the Ancient Greeks were rather fond of doing many activities in the nude. Wrestling, running, dancing, you name it. It would appear that our current conceptions of nudity and public decency are quite different from that of our ancient Greek counterparts.
So, it only seems fitting that I would find myself butt naked on a public beach while studying abroad in Nafplio, Greece.
I can safely say that my five weeks in Greece with a Harvard study abroad program were some of the happiest of my life. As I write this, it’s hard to believe that this time last year I had yet to experience the joy of travelling and studying around Greece with a group of then-strangers who I would now consider some of my best friends. It’s amazing how much bonding occurs during long bus rides, hungover museum tours, and meals consisting of endless amounts of feta cheese.
We bonded to the point that the idea of midnight skinny dipping together really didn’t phase me at all. And so, one night, after a couple swigs from plastic bottles of wine (still better than Yellowtail), we all trooped towards the beach, stripped down to our birthday suits, and ran screaming into the cool Mediterranean waters.
There’s something very freeing about skinny dipping. While submerged in the water with nothing to separate me from the waves, I felt a profound sense of contentment. Like many, I’ve had moments of doubt where my body image really takes a hit. Late night pizza and the freshman fifteen really hit me hard and I’ve struggled with maintaining a healthy lifestyle ever since going to college.
But in that moment, naked beneath the waves and the stars, I came to the realisation that a body is really just a body. I was drunk on self-love and on the sheer ridiculousness of it all (and let’s not forget the wine). I felt fully comfortable in my own skin and nothing more.
There are plenty of other moments of great happiness from my time in Greece that I hope to share here soon. For now though, here are some photos of my favourite memories from my time there. Luckily for you, and for everyone else on that trip for that matter, there are no photos of that one time we embraced Ancient Greek tradition and bared it all under the Mediterranean moonlight.