After an intense period at work, my partner and I decided to head down to Sinai. We arrived at the beach in the early morning hours, the sky was clear and a light breeze blew and softened the beaming sun rays. Our hut was very close to the sea, and we lay hugging on the mattress, tired from the long drive.
I began to feel little kisses climbing up my neck. I moaned lightly and knocked my head back as if asking for more. He began to kiss me on the neck, and his hand began to caress my legs, fondling up my thighs and from there to my groin until it reached my fly. He gently zipped it open and slid his hand in. I lifted my neck up and scanned around to check there was nobody there.
“There's not a living soul here,” he said. "I don't know, what if someone comes?” I replied. "No one will come, we are alone here. But if it makes you nervous, we'll stop. Do you want to go for a stroll on the beach?” he asked.
My pants were already down, I wasn't wearing any underwear and my swimsuit top was the only piece of cloth covering my body. I tied a supple thin cloth scarf around my waist as a skirt, and we went for a walk.
The wind blew gently and the underwear was certainly felt in its absence. I had a good time. It was a long beachside amble and we realized there was no one out there but us. I took off my bra, shed off my skirt, and was naked as the day I was born. “Are you joining me?” I shouted at him as I started dancing and waving my scarf in the air. “When do you get to be naked in the open air without anyone looking?” I said amused as I ran to the water, jumping and rejoicing like a little girl.
At the horizon, we saw two objects slowly moving toward us, and I waddled back to shore to cover myself up. It was another couple, but they just passed us quietly and settled far away from us. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw two bronze-tanned, naked bodies jumping into the water. Great! It's not just us! What a relief.
As if by being naked and free, the couple also granted us a seal of approval to expose ourselves. At once I felt comfortable. I hastened to shed the scarf and exposed my naked body with confidence. The pair were far enough away that neither of us could stare at the other.
My partner smiled at me, set down the bag on the sand, and got naked as well. I looked at his naked body against the backdrop of the open sea, and melted. How beautiful is the human body. I cried out with joy and ran into the water. I was so liberated. We started to jump, shout and sing. The naked couple was no longer in sight, but we knew they were still there, and the fact that there was another naked couple in the area made me feel safe, almost like I was on a declared nudist beach.
“Yuval, look! What's this? It’s not a stone,” my partner said and picked up something that looked like a rock but was still soft. “It’s clay,” I said and realized that the shoreline was peppered with huge masses of clay. I picked up one lump of clay and started kneading and rubbing it all over my body. One person’s waste is another person’s treasure.
I tried out naturism and nudity before, but everywhere had its own set of rules of conduct, where bathers knew to respect each other's boundaries and not encroach on their personal space. In Spain, for example, I visited two nude beaches. One was a declared nudist beach of the local bear community and it was jam-packed with gay bathers, so I felt very comfortable being naked around them. Knowing that nobody cared about my existence allowed me to feel free by not drawing too much attention.
The second beach I've been to was a peaceful and magical piece of a shore, which was relatively empty. I was with friends, and there was also a young couple there, as well as a sweet family with two small children. I looked at them jealously and thought to myself that teaching children about nudity as a natural part of our human experience is something great we shouldn't be ashamed of.
Since then, I have been a big fan of naturism, but unfortunately, in Israel, we are unable to experience the natural and non-sexual sense of freedom and liberation that one can feel through nudity in nature. In Israel, there is an explicit ban on public nudity, and anyone caught naked – even if in an empty and desolate place – can be fined and even risk a year in prison.
It is no secret that we live in a conservative country, and to the best of my knowledge, except for one beach, there are almost no areas in Israel where you can bathe naked. To experience naturist experiences in Israel, or just expose a nipple in peace, you need to either find a desolate place, deep within a forest far from sight, or attend naturist events such as festivals or parties.
The difficulty of enjoying nudity in Israel is not limited to the lack of space. Even partial nudity is problematic. For example, sunbathing topless at the beach is a very rare practice that is generally frowned upon and may be considered indecent exposure, while in parks across Europe, the lawns, beaches, and lakes have dozens of free nipples, which roam around in the open air without anyone staring at them in shock.
In Israel, a female nipple is considered an act of defiance, a provocation, even breastfeeding! There is an ironic dimension to it because while the female nipple is used for both breastfeeding and pleasure, the male nipple is used for pleasure purposes only, and still it is free to be exposed in public spaces without any problem.
Much has been said about censorship on Instagram and Facebook which can block users because of an exposed female nipple, which will never happen to a photo of a shirtless man.
But of course, this is a much broader issue than this particular inequality. Israel is marching toward a particularly conservative era, and there is no telling where it will lead. A conservative society is a society that is afraid of nudity and the desires that might arise from looking at it. But by allowing nudity in the public sphere, we'll get used to its naturality, the feelings of shame and concealment will dissipate, and our natural bodies will be normalized.
Our bodies and those around us don't have to be sexual or erotic, but natural and normal. And being naked with your partner is an intimate experience. How does it make sense that in our world something so natural as the human body is considered a provocation? How strong was the apple Eve gave Adam? Let's free ourselves from this bad trip, our body is not a provocation.
I want to go to Sinai again.