Only a few minutes had transpired before the trio traveling in the hatchback found themselves crossing the Golden Gate Bridge. Sammy, who held great interest in observing what he could see of the view of the bay, begrudgingly stole a few moments to count, at the request of his nominal employer, Doff de Chonez, the amount of money that had been thrust into his fist by the best man of the wedding party whose photography session they had so nakedly interrupted.
“Five, ten, fifteen…” began Sammy.
“By the bare bottom of Beto the Vato,” interjected Doff de Chonez. “I had not imagined more than ten!”
“But here’s forty already,” continued Sammy, “and another… seven. Forty-seven dollars, Your Nudeness.”
“Please spare me those last seven,” requested Eric, their driver, “because I need them to pay the toll.”
Sammy, sipping the large iced coffee that Eric had purchased for him at the coffee shop where Jeff worked, willingly gave up the money, although historians seem to agree that he did wince while doing so.
“Such a generous man,” opined Doff de Chonez.
“Why, thank you, Your Nudeship,” replied Sammy.
“Not thou, Sammy Panzov,” chided Doff de Chonez, “but rather the man who gave you those bills. I’m sure he felt the urge to reimburse us for the time we spent enlightening the wedding party.”
“No doubt,” grumbled Sammy. “And with an extra contribution to the cause of miscorrecting conceptions about nudity.”
“Thou meanst to say, ‘correcting misconceptions,’” explained Doff de Chonez, laughing.
“What I mean to say,” retorted Sammy, “is that, as I learned from years of playing lotería, the sun is the blanket of the poor, and right now the sun, and forty dollars, is all we have… and even as I speak the sun is disappearing in a fog.”
“Don’t give up hope,” replied Doff de Chonez. “Remember that we’ll be meeting Dr. Nicholson at the beach. I understand him to be a man of great respect for our mission. He will be honored to help us.”
Eric, determined to get his passengers to Baker Beach, but needing to first retrieve his sister from her place of employment, and to whom he had already texted about the character of his passengers, wondered and marveled at the conversations between the pair of persistently naked men. “The fog comes and goes, Sammy,” he said. “It’s a kind of blanket as well, I guess.”
“But if it is a blanket,” said Sammy, “then it is a wet one. I hope it has pulled back by the time we get to the beach. And, blessed be, neither sun nor fog is a blanket that can be used for tossing.”
After a few hearty, though restrained, guffaws from Eric, they began a long period of further driving, in which the only sound was often the slurp of iced coffee through straws, and in which all three men seemed to reflect on inner thoughts as they looked out at the landscape.
Doff de Chonez broke the silence. “Friend Eric, I wish to ask you a question,” he declared. “When we… uh… danced, last night, there in that beautiful setting overlooking the mighty Pacific, what did I say to thee? I am most curious to know, if thou wilst tell me, for the entire evening seems to me now like an enchanted dream, an oneiric reverie.”
“Oh!” exclaimed Eric, who chuckled a bit. “Well, you were saying things like… let’s see if I can remember your words… oh yeah, ‘I will apprehend the perpetrator of this wardrobe robbery,’ because you were going on about a stolen dress, and ‘I want to join you in presenting our doffed offerings to the naked sky,’ which as far as I could tell was about this woman’s backyard clothesline.”
“This woman?” echoed Doff de Chonez in a tone of high irritation. “This woman? She is none other than my Lady Mechinelda, paragon of naturism.”
“Your Nudiness,” interjected Sammy, “you must remember that you were under the impression that Eric himself was your Lady Mechinelda. I remember it well, for I remember laughing until I wept, and in fact I can vouch for what our friend Eric says about all the nonsense you were spouting as you hopped about, jerking yourself around in what only a very generous person would call a dance.”
“Thou speakest thus, Sammy,” rejoined Doff de Chonez, “thou, who danceth not unlike a constipated walrus?”
“A poor dancer, as they say,” claimed Sammy, “will be disturbed even by the hem of her skirt, and yet you, with neither skirt nor hem, danced like a trundling buffalo.”
“Gentlemen,” ventured Eric, “you both consumed some serious goods last night. But I only drank two beers, and I say that you both danced very well indeed.”
“This is an impossible statement,” Sammy said, “because I did not dance.”
“Well,” clarified Eric, “whoever Teresa is, she should know that you danced with another woman on her behalf, holding her tight while calling out that name.”
Sammy’s cheeks turned several shades ruddier than usual. “As I often hear my wife Teresa say,” he said, “you should walk with your slippers until you can find your shoes.”
“’Tis an odd walrus,” offered Doff de Chonez, “what requires footwear.”
“How dare you insult Teresa!” shouted Sammy.
“Here we are!” yelled Eric, happy to interrupt as he pulled into the parking lot of the Kule Loklo Coast Miwok village, a Native American cultural center in Point Reyes. “My sister says we should look around the place a bit, and she’ll be ready in a little while.”
|Miwok approaching Sir Francis Drake’s ship under repair. Source|
No sooner had these words left Eric’s mouth than Doff de Chonez bolted stark naked from the car, stretching his legs in an energetic jaunt over to one of the structures depicting the housing of the Miwok, the indigenous people who were already living in the area when Europeans arrived in the sixteenth century. Sammy followed along, while Eric first grabbed the bright pink towels, and then shrugged and tossed them back onto the seat.
Sammy found his partner absorbed in the reading of a sign that had been posted next to the structure. The structure itself was a dwelling that looked like a conical hut made of large wood slabs laid against each other.
“Inform thyself, Sammy,” intoned Doff de Chonez, “of the remarkable history of naturism. As thou canst see here, this sign reads: ‘During the warm weather the Bay Miwok men wore no clothes at all.’ Thou and I, Sammy – we are as bare as our forebears.”
At this, Doff de Chonez lowered himself to one knee and bowed his head.
“That is indeed remarkable,” agreed Sammy. “And the sign tells us, as well, that the women of this tribe went topless, with only a grass skirt made of front and back hangings.”
“Thou meanst to say ‘top-free,’ friend,” corrected Doff de Chonez, “for to say ‘topless’ implies that something is missing, when no such covering would have been missing at all.”
“It’s the wearer of the shoe,” replied Sammy, “who best knows where it pinches, as they say, to which I would add that a bra is very like a shoe.”
“What knowest thou of bras?” asked Doff de Chonez.
“Not that I’ve ever worn one, Your Nakedity,” Sammy hasted to make clear, “but what I mean to say is that a bra must pinch rather like a shoe does, or like a pair of pants can.”
“Thou hast a most prodigious memory for proverbs,” answered Doff de Chonez, “matched by your fanciful imagination. Yes, all clothing can pinch, and yet here, for the Miwok, there was practically none to speak of. What word be there for a brassiere, when no such contraption exists?”
“It’s a great question,” responded Sheila—who, with her brother Eric, had approached the extraordinary nudists—“because you’re exactly right. The Miwok used very little clothing, especially in the summer. It was only after Francis Drake and other Europeans arrived that they began to learn of bras and corsets, jackets and pantaloons, and so many more restrictive garments.”
“I imagine” added Eric, “that’s also when they began to complain about pinching, too.”
|Miwok structures at Kule Loklo|
A family of several adults and children appeared suddenly, having walked around the dwelling without seeing Eric’s group on the other side. Sheila, reacting quickly, introduced herself as a guide, and then introduced the pair of nudists as “special visitors” who had decided to try the lifestyle of the Coast Miwok.
“Truly hast thou spoken,” said Doff de Chonez, “for I am most inspired by the lives of those who bare themselves to the elements, those who bare themselves not briefly, but constantly.”
“Mommy,” said a little girl in the group, tugging at her blouse. “Can I try?”
When the mother looked around, she saw that the girl’s brother had already taken his shirt off and was poised to remove his pants. She acted quickly to stop him.
“It’s alright,” said Sheila, who winked at Eric. “Today only, park visitors are allowed to participate in Miwok fashion. But I’m off duty and leaving the park now. After that, only you will be able to answer for your… fashion.”
“You can’t make a silk purse from a sow’s ear, I always say,” said Sammy, “but you can probably make a good stew of it.”
The mother stared blankly at Sammy, but she desisted from keeping her children’s clothes on, and the two of them were soon running naked around the conical dwelling with such joy and abandon that the mother and father could only smile.
“Enjoy the rest of your day here at Kule Loklo,” said Sheila, as she and Eric led Doff de Chonez and Sammy back to Eric’s car.
“With regular traffic,” Eric said, “we should still be able to enjoy a couple hours at the nude beach before the sun goes down. You sure you’re up for this, sis?”
“If the brother and sister we just saw could throw off their clothes and run around in the sun,” replied Sheila, “then we can too. Plus, I really appreciate you coming out here to pick me up, so it’s the least I can do to accommodate myself to your schedule. But, like, will you at least introduce me to your friends you’ve told me so much about?”
Introductions were made as Eric, Sheila, Sammy, and Doff de Chonez settled into Eric’s hatchback and headed south to Baker Beach.