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    Single, female and a naturist

    New member Emma James discovers a wonderful world of new friends

    I’ve been comfortable with the human body for many years but never really felt able to explore naturism as a way of life, hoping in the decade or so I’ve been a single parent that I might one day find a partner who would be keen to explore naturism with me.

    Being single held me back from joining BN, my perception being that I’d be happier joining as part of a couple. Where’s the joy in going on holiday on your own? There’s merit but it’s decidedly more fun in company not to mention cheaper, thanks to those dratted single supplements!

    In September this year, I planned a short break with my then-Partner at the wonderful Waterhouse in Scotland (www.waterhousekbt.co.uk) with fine dining and golf also on the menu – but said man skipped off, leaving me once again single, still a female and, having sent off my application form for British Naturism, a burgeoning official naturist.

    When I was growing up, we had a garden big enough to sunbathe in without worrying about the neighbours; in my current house, there’s absolutely no way. I’ve spent time on naturist beaches and my poor eighteen-year-old son despairs at the lack of clothing on display in the house first thing in the morning.

    It was no surprise to him, or my daughter, when I became a member of BN. I wish I’d joined years ago; then they, too, could have enjoyed spending time at my local sun club, Diogenes.

    Diogenes is a large manor house in Buckinghamshire, set in six acres of beautiful grounds, run by the members for the members. There’s a regular programme of social events and it’s become part of my life, along with the people.

    To my surprise, the naturist community couldn’t have been more welcoming or accepting, although I’m not your archetypal applicant.

    As a member of British Naturism, I’m entitled to post on the BN forum which I did by way of introduction and I’m slowly getting to know members of the community locally and nationally.

    I learnt of Diogenes (www.diogenessunclub.co.uk) where I’m delighted to say, I was recently accepted.

    The application process requires you to meet with 12 committee members on a one-to-one basis so they can get to know you – not, as I imagined in my nightmare scenario, a scene whereby I was sitting in a chair opposite a long trestle table with twelve people firing questions at me, but altogether more relaxed chats, sometimes clothed, sometimes not. As any naturist will tell you, it’s entirely weather-dependent!

    In common with the BN Forums, people have been very friendly and welcoming, despite my irrepressible nature and boundless energy. “You’re very enthusiastic” commented one club member with a grin.

    I’m naturally very sporty so I’ve been availing myself of the amazing facilities at Diogenes. The 60ft heated outdoor pool has been the main focus of my attention with one-hour stretches being clocked up on a regular basis. “You’ll get thrown out for being too fit” commented another member.

    The exquisite heated indoor pool, with its wonderful tiling and large canvas paintings, has also been a focus, along with “boules in the buff” as I tweet on a regular basis. I’d never played boules before Diogenes and what a great game it is – social, strategic, competitive and the heart of Diogenes, along with Miniten which I’ve yet to try.

    I’m very glad that being single didn’t continue to hold me back from becoming part of such a vibrant, friendly, relaxed community and if you’re in the same position, I’d suggest you too take the plunge, join BN and find your local club.

    There’s a world of like-minded people out there, happy to extend a welcome to you as they have to me.

    My world is undoubtedly a richer place since becoming a naturist and I know that this, along with sailing which I’ve recently taken up, will be very much part of my future irrespective of whether anyone is brave enough to walk alongside me – they wouldn’t keep up anyway...

    See you at the BN Alton Towers weekend!

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