By Thomas Morrone, CFP®, CPA
I was never much for lying on the beach to bask in the rays. For some though, soaking up some sun on a beautiful summer day is relaxing and rewarding. Not this guy. Countless times I have seen someone that had lobster colored skin where they received a nasty burn and certainly were in some pain. I do not want to be that person that someone else is staring at and commenting on the sunburn. That does not mean I avoid the beach and the sun. On the other hand, walking on the beach is something I absolutely love and can do that for hours. Cathy and I have done many a stroll along the shoreline searching for whatever the ocean decided to deposit on the sandy beach. Shells, sharks’ teeth, driftwood, star fish, whatever. Not only what is on the beach keeps our interest but what is in the water, on the water, flying over the water or the water itself add to the natural beauty of the shoreline. Walking along, a balmy breeze and not a care in the world and time just seems to pass by. That is of course until later in the day or that evening when you realize that you missed some spots with the sunscreen or even worse realize that you forgot to put sunscreen on. Ouch. Having experienced sun burn in years past makes me much more cautious. Loving to do so many outdoor activities, exposure to the sun is a necessary evil and I do make a conscious effort to be careful.
Being Italian, I am naturally darker skinned than most and add my hair and I have some built in UPF characteristics (Ultraviolet Protection Factor). I sometimes get lazy about protecting my skin from the sun as a result. I don’t know who likes putting on sunscreen but of course it is a very safe ritual to apply the “goop” to protect your skin. Now there are the spray bottles to make applying lotions a little easier. I have taken other measures to help protect myself from the harmful UV rays (ultraviolet radiation). Many shirts now come with a UPF protection rating just like sunscreen. There is a company called Reel Legends, that offers a complete line of clothing offering UPF protection. Over the years I think I have accumulated their short sleeve shirts in just about every color including some that are florescent. I also have a collection of their long sleeve shirts as well. They not only help protect you from the sun, but they are light weight and help your body breathe to keep you cool. Also, when the shirts get wet, they dry very quickly unlike some heavier cotton shirts. In addition to the UPF shirt, I wear a large brim safari style hat and my polarized sunglasses, and I am ready to challenge the outdoors. I am ready for a long walk on the beach, a nice kayak ride, a boat ride, working around the yard, hanging around the pool, taking Buddy for a walk or whatever else I want to do and be in the sun.
New Englanders, for the most part are hearty people. We endure the winter and sometimes have no Spring season and go right into a short-lived Summer. We long for the sun and look forward to getting outside and enjoying the nice weather when it finally arrives. Taking some precautions before you venture outdoors can save some pain and discomfort and help you enjoy the sunshine.
Even after all these precautions, we always have Aloe Vera in the house.
Until the Next Tom’s Take…