I was hanging out on the deck with a female friend this past weekend. It was hot, about 75F, and my friend had shed all her clothes.

“I don’t mind being nude here,” she told me. “Nobody can see us. But I wouldn’t want to be naked at a beach — I don’t have a nice body . . .”

And that in a nutshell is why some people fear social nudism, I suspect. Body image. They are self-conscious about their bodies because they don’t have the ideal model look (read: skinny).

I assured my friend that there is nothing wrong with her body, that she looks just fine, and that nudism is, in part, about liberating ourselves from unrealistic body images and just accepting and celebrating people as they are. I also explained that few people will be looking her body up and down.

I know how it is: we are our worst critics when it comes to our appearance. Yet I also know that when it comes to interactions with people, their appearance is irrelevant. It doesn’t matter whether they are fat, skinny or in-between. It doesn’t matter whether they look like Cinderella or The Phantom of the Opera. And it doesn’t matter whether they are dressed in the most fashionable clothes or clothes from a second-hand shop. What matters to most people is the soul reflection in their eyes and the love in their hearts.

So, perhaps I will have someone to join me in the weeks to come when I visit a couple of social nudism settings. I’m not sure if social nudism is for me, but it will be an interesting experience — and as I get older (i.e. 20-plus), I do find myself becoming more adventurous.

As for the weather, they are predicting this incredible summer weather will be gone by early next week, and we’ll be back to typical Quebec spring temperatures around 55F during the daytime, much colder at night. So, the visit to the nudist beach may not happen until late May or early June . . .

Then again, I’m thinking my naturism debut at the nudist beach might be anti-climactic, as in no big deal at all. After all, I’ve been on a beach in my bikini. I can’t see how removing two tiny pieces of textile will make all that much difference.

Will it?

Smiles . . .