Nudes, prudes and swingers

During the time I spent living with my husband next door to Hedonism II resort in Jamaica, I often suspected the neighbors were having more fun than we were.Strolling from the townhouse my husband Javier’s employer rented for him in the coconut palm-lined vacation paradise of Negril, we’d dodge them on Seven Mile Beach in front of the resort, playing a game of bocce ball in the buff before noon or wading into the turquoise water to skinny dip.Sometimes, we’d encounter them stepping aboard a snorkeling catamaran from the beach, not a stitch of clothing in sight.The cheering I’d sometimes hear coming from the resort’s guests when I passed by on the beach during what I later learned was called the “car wash” — imagine a version where humans are both the cars and the scrubbers, just add soap — had the effect of making my life seem quite inhibited by comparison.And once, when we spent the night at Hedonism II after getting evacuated to its more secure buildings by my husband’s company during a hurricane scare, pregnant and self-conscious me was surprised by how “normal” everyone seemed, despite being dressed up as sexy school girls and naughty headmasters for the theme of the night. (“Hedo baby?” one naughty school girl asked me in the buffet line, motioning to my seven-month baby bump, breaking the ice and cracking me up).Indeed, Hedonism II — where the mantra is “Be Wicked for a Week” — is no ordinary resort. A magnet for nudists, swingers and sun-seekers looking for a relaxed, tropical vacation where judgment isn’t part of the package, it’s one of the oldest and most popular all-inclusive resorts in Jamaica.So when I heard it was reopening July 1 (the resort closed March 21 as Jamaica closed its borders to inbound travelers) in the middle of a pandemic where social distancing has become the norm, I had to know how that was going to go down.