We were so sun-protected that we got no tan at all! okay my hands are slightly darker, with a sharp line at the wrist.
They warned us ahead of time to use 40 sunblock and of course we considered the fact that they were presuming a gringo audience, but we also know that that kind of thinking is a quick way to getting fried to a crisp!
When i was twelve, my sister and I went to hawaii for about a month. my gringo uncle (the child molester) was in the military and had just finished med school, and they were assigned to hawaii. He and my aunt and her three kids and their one were all covered by military, as were his two (chicana) daughters from a previous marriage. the other two daughters weren't coming, so my sister and i masqueraded as them, including being issued military i.d. cards.
we assumed their names (with many mistakes) and ages (ditto): My sixteen year-old sister Christine was trying to pass as a twelve year-old Sabrina,and at twelve I was supposed to be a nine year-old Rochelle.
This was in 1978, and our first week there, everyone laid on the beach in baby oil and fried like they'd never fried before. (not me, I was nerdy and was using a "shade" sunscreen, with a big SPF of 6 (!!), but it did the job)
I'm assuming I'm not opening myself or my sister to any legal action here, since we were both minors.
I want to make it clear that my gringo uncle called all the shots,and thus assumed all responsibility. My parents had no idea it was anything so fraudulent.
Oh, but the purpose of telling this story, is that after a month in Hawaii, we had gotten so much sun, that when we flew home to New Mexico, our parents didn't recognize us. They literally walked past us.
In Costa Rica, I did, in fact, get a burn on the part in my hair, on days 2, and 3. (day one I put sunscreen there. On day four i wore my hat into the water, since I wasn't getting my butt kicked by the waves anymore) but nothing serious. though I'll get a nasty case of dandruff in about a week.
Here's a picture of the zip line (but not the bruises).
It reminded me again of northern New Mexico. Like if Abey Maes and his cousin Charlie strung up wire cables so you could zip across the Mora Valley. Like, "isn't this a little dangerous?" I tried not to think about that girl who's feet were cut off by a loose cable at an amusement park.