Having gained some confidence about being naked in public through the early summer, I set off for Oka beach, which has an unofficial nudist area. Oka is a national park and on it’s website it makes no mention of a nudist area, and official signs at the park state that public nudity is a criminal offence punishable by summary conviction. However, like so many things in Quebec, it’s nudge, nudge, wink, wink, and no one cares. As a matter of fact, the beach is patrolled by park wardens on four wheelers to make sure that the nudists stay on the beach, in between the yellow flags, and that there are no sexual shenanigans going on. This is actually OK since it keeps the pervs at bay. The nude area is serviced with public washrooms and outdoor shower and a small canteen selling drinks (including beer) and snacks. However, you have to cover up to walk these 20 feet or so to use these facilities. That made me smile. You have to put on a bathing suit to wash the beach sand off your body.
The day at the beach was altogether a great experience. Lots of men and women and children, young and old, having a good time on the beach, sunning, walking about, chatting and swimming. All together in the all together and with no drama. How refreshing was it to see the plus sized people there not restrained by ill fitting suits, just letting it all hang out, and the beautiful young people just strutting their stuff. I lay back on my beach towel, covered my eyes with my Australian Great Ocean Road cap, and felt the warmth of the sun, the breeze, and listen to the gentle talk of people have a really nice time. I felt lucky to be here and lucky to be so alive. I knew I would return, and have often.