I don't know if it's because I'm American or Mormon or shy or because I don't love the way my body looks or because I don't shave my legs very thoroughly, but parading around all nudey-times never seemed that great.
And then ...
I am in Freiburg tonight. I'm here to go to the Black Forest. I didn't think a hostel would be a big deal because it's the middle of October; how many people are coming? (Side note: I have to stop thinking that.)
So the hostel I'd planned to stay at is full, and I got a reply in German from another hostel that a bed was available, so a receptionist at my Heidelberg hostel interpreted the email and then called him to reserve it. (Bless her.) I get to Freiburg, try to find it myself, take a cab ride that costs two euros per minute and check in.
Really, the name, and the fact that it's in Europe, should have clued me in. It didn't. The guy checking me in pointing out places where I didn't need to have clothes on did.
For the record, I'm dressed now.
So ... yeah. Fortunately the naked men I've seen have been young and in shape. However, despite the nice poems on the walk celebrating skin and decrying clothes, I just can't quite shake the feeling that we should not all be running around naked! In your own home, in your backyard, on your private island -- go to town. Where I'm going to see you -- I'm sorry, I just can't get over the hangups of the first paragraph.
I'm staying two more days, though. Maybe I can shake it.
Also, kids just walked in.
My day in Heidelberg was cold and wet, but the Internet did not lie about how pretty it is. The castle is on the mountainside overlooking the university and the Altstadt (old town), so there's lots of super cool architecture. It was mostly green, but the trees are changing, so the landscape has splotches of red and gold. The river runs idly though the valley. It looks just a wee bit like a fairy tale.