… of face painting. See, I do not lie.
Beware swimming with wild dolphins too far from the equator though. I had a dip in Dingle Bay (Kerry, a stunning and WHO protected coastline) over ten years ago, rather ill-advisedly in April (yes the Atlantic, not recommended). Despite the wetsuit and the mind-boggling sight of Fungi the wild, but friendly dolphin, swimming under and around us I ended up becoming extremely cold. Colder than I have ever been in my whole life.
Then what happened was this. Apparently. My body flooded itself with histamine which had the effect of my sneezing continually all day on the drive from Dingle to Galway (about 7 hours). All the sneezing and or the histamine caused my head to swell up like a beach ball. My first act on arrival in the city of Galway was to run a sink of cold water at the hotel and immerse my whole head in it. Not to drown myself (although that may have been better than the sneezing) but to seek blessed relief from having an enormous, red and hot head. Why I didn’t go to hospital I can’t say. I come from a family of alarming allergic reactionists, so perhaps I am more inured to such things than most. My companion was despatched to buy anti-histamines and the crisis passed in its own time. I have been left with a legacy though. Whenever my body feels even the tiniest bit cold it starts with its emergency flooding my body with histamine again, even though there is not a dolphin in sight.
I am therefore on an every-other day dose of cetirizine hydrochloride which seems to do the trick. If I don’t take it I invariably end up with a rash all over my body and face of hideous proportions, depending on how cold it is. During pregnancy I did not take it and I can empathise with people who have facial disfigurements and the looks they get – which I can expand upon in the upcoming (and truly gripping!) “Seals @ Gweek” post… As we’ve done enemas and dolphins this week I thought I would stick with the aquatic theme.
So, if you will swim with the wonders of the world that are dolphins, please do it in the tropics and I would prefer it if they were not of the captive variety. It is hardly the same honour as it is to swim with a truly wild one, is it?
This usually involves long queues and plenty of teeth-gnashing (that’s from me, not the kids who wait their turn patiently). It pays to check out the face painter’s ouvres first too, some are barely more than some cack-handed splodges across your angel’s pretty face…
If I see a face painter I can be seen sprinting in the opposite direction lest I get caught up in a queue and made to part with hard cash for my troubles, but sometimes the results are worth the pain. Not unlike childbirth!