So the day before leaving for home, he decided to visit the beaches of the city. He grabbed a backpack, put everything he needed in it and walked to the nearest metro station. In the train, he watched the people, as he always did. He loved to do that as he felt it gave him a vision of what people truly were and if the world was doomed or not.
At the next stop, a guy and his girlfriend (Liam inferred this from seeing them holding hands) entered the train. They were both really good looking: the girl had auburn hair, big eyes and a curvy body and the guy had nice legs, great arms and really sexy lips.
Liam stopped watching soon as he thought it would be most unsettling to notice a 28 year old guy looking at you as if you were a god or something. Instead, he checked his cellphone to see how many stops there were left.
Fifteen minutes later, he got off the train and walked up to the surface: the station was blocks away from the most popular beach. He walked a few meters but started to see loads and loads of people, coming in from every street and side. When he got to the boardwalk, he realized the place was packed.
Liam was alone and couldn't afford to leave his backpack where there were at least two hundred people watching. He was not only worried about being robbed, though, As he walked along the boardwalk, he also remembered how self-conscious he could be about his own body. He hated it but that was the way things were.
He walked, looking for an emptier part of the beach but that appeared to be useless. He crossed a marina and then a park and, finally, got to a much nicer and calmer beach. There was a huge rock in the entrance, possibly to make it a little less noisier for everyone.
Liam stepped on the sand and walked a bit until he saw the perfect spot by the ocean but with a good view from the water to check the backpack if it was needed.
He looked at both sides, seeing very few people and then took off his T-shirt. He put it in the backpack and pulled out a big blue towel. He sat on it and started to put some sunscreen on his skin when he noticed something peculiar.
A woman, maybe in her sixties, laid in the sand topless. She was not very far and Liam couldn't understand how he had not seen her before. The woman seemed to have fallen asleep as she was enjoying the sun.
Liam ignored this and continued to put on some sunscreen. He laid on his towel and put on his headphones to listen to music as he tanned with the sun. He sure needed it as his skin was very pale and in urgent need of some color.
He was starting to doze off when a volleyball hit him on the side. He was more scared than hurt but the young man rubbed his ribs anyway. Someone came running on the sand and grabbed the ball.
- Sorry man. Are you okay?
When the guy started to walk away, Liam gazed upwards and stopped faking he had been hurt. The guy was naked. Stark naked. not even wearing sandals or a watch.
Liam looked at him walk to his friends, who were also naked, and start their game again. He couldn't believe he was witnessing a naked game of volleyball.
Then he looked in another direction and he saw an older man walking a dog and behind him a couple playing with their baby. All of them were naked too.
The young man grabbed his phone and quickly wrote, already too nervous, the shame kicking in. Yeah, just what he thought. He had apparently walked straight into the only nude beach within the city limits.
To be correct, nudity was allowed but it wasn't exclusive. People could wear clothes if they wanted to and some were, mostly women wearing the lower part of their bikinis.
Liam looked for his T-shirt and put it on. He put everything back inside his backpack and started to walk when someone called him. And he knew they were calling him because they were yelling "metro boy".
Unbeknownst to him, the guy and the girl from the train were not very far from him. He hadn't seen them either, like the topless woman. For a moment, that seem to go for ages, he had no idea of what to do. But he had no other choice when the girl came up to him and greeted him, as if they were long time friends.
He grabbed him by the hand and took him to were the guy was. They said they had seen Liam in the train and that he looked foreign. He confirmed it and they told him they were foreigners too, from New Zealand. And they were brother and sister, so he had gotten that wrong.
It was all very nice but Liam was too uncomfortable. The girl had her top off and the guy was totally naked and, as expected, they both looked great. They had to be models or surfers or something like that.
- I have to leave. Sorry. - said Liam, after 15 minutes of chatting.
They begged for him to stay but Liam insisted he had to leave.
- Maybe you would feel better without the shirt. - said the guy.
Liam looked at him with anger but also with shame. That was maybe true but it wasn't that easy for him. Fed up with everything, he decided to be honest. He told them how uncomfortable he was at the moment and that he'd rather leave than make everyone feel awkward too.
The guy told him they had decided to speak to him because he seemed nice and he was alone, like them. He insisted on him taking off his shirt and talking to them. He clarified it was their first time in a nude beach too but that bodies were overrated.
Liam sat down and asked the guy to explain that to him. He responded that people that were really into people, had no trouble getting naked as they knew bodies are just a fraction of what a person really is.
- An important fraction. The one you see at first glimpse. - replied Liam.
- True. But you don't stay for it. And if you do, you're just a shallow idiot.
This made Liam smile. He then changed the subject and talked to them both for hours, about heir lives, their countries and what discoveries they had made in the city. They played UNO and, finally, Liam took off his shirt to swim with them.
When night was arriving, they went for dinner to a restaurant and then had some drinks. When he got to his hotel, a bit tipsy, Liam realized he had made new friends and, even if it only ended up being a "Facebook friendship", it didn't mattered. What was important was the fact he had decided to listen what others had to say and that opened more doors than the doubts he had.