We were wandering down to the beach last night, for some beach night soccer, and these photographs caught my eye. They are part of the rejuvenated boardwalk along the Surfer's Paradise foreshore. This was Surfer's Paradise beach in 1967, the year I was born. That's the Surfer's Paradise Surf Life Saving Club. Look at all the umbrellas on the beach!
Even before the early 80's 'Slip, Slop, Slap' sun protection campaign had started, at least there was shade on the beach. I had only said to the boys, that morning on the beach, that when I was little, all you could see on the beach were umbrellas. These days, there's not one.... and to my horror, those younger than myself lie in the midday sun, face up to the sun, and sunbake!!! You don't see many, over my age, baking these days... that's because we are now starting to suffer. I have already had 8 things, that could have eventually killed me, cut out.... and I know that's just the start. I remember my Mum saying, "it's alright now, but wait until your forties". She was right.
It's interesting. That 'Slip, Slop, Slap' campaign (featuring 'Sid the Seagull' singing to us about slipping on a shirt, slopping on sunscreen and slapping on a hat) resulted in reducing the incidence of the two most common forms of skin cancer... BCC, basel cell carcinoma and SCC, squamous cell carcinoma. Melanoma, the deadly one, is on the increase. The scary thing?...epidemiological studies have shown that increases in the prevalence of skin cancer are not necessarily prevented with the use of sunscreens. The shirt, and hat, sunglasses and sitting in the shade are still the best way to minimise risk.
Cavill Avenue. I like it much better then.
So where are the umbrellas today? There was not one on the busiest beach in Queensland yesterday.
Not one. Should they resurrect 'Slip, Slop, Slap' for this generation? I think so. I stood there, right on the beach, amongst baking teenagers, lecturing my boys yesterday, pointing out the next BCC on my arm that needs to be cut out. I hope they get the message.
The safest time on the beach!
We washed the tiger off last night. It was coated in sand.
Stay tuned. The face painting is free. I think it might be spiderman today.
We've created a monster.