'Top Secret Beaches' Reveals the Heartbreak of Life at the Shore

Who needs all that sun and surf, anyway?

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Top Secret Beaches might showcase some of the world’s most spectacular coastlines, but it can’t hide their drawbacks. Drawbacks, you say? Oh, yes. These include...

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 Sand, sand and more sand

Sand is Mother Nature’s version of loose glitter: Once it’s part of your life, there’s no getting rid of it. Most of the thousand-watt smiles you see in beach photography are actually grimaces. That stuff finds every nook and cranny.

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 You can’t make small talk about the weather

When it’s consistently—even monotonously—spectacular outside, what are you supposed to chat about in elevators? Yeah yeah, there aren’t many elevators at the beach. Not the point.

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 The hassle of pedicure maintenance

Tucking your neglected toes away isn’t an option at the beach, where being presentable in bare feet is a must. Resign yourself to spending time (and money, most likely) on yours.

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 Keeping track of tan lines

Your cousin isn’t going to be interested in how you wanted to wear a different bathing suit every day of your vacation when you turn up for her wedding in a strapless bridesmaid’s dress that makes you look like an elementary-school art project, now is she?

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 Time alone with your thoughts

“We’re born alone, we live alone, we die alone,” Orson Welles wrote. “Only through our love and friendship can we create the illusion for the moment that we’re not alone.” When you’re isolated on a top secret beach, the howling void of that solitude is almost impossible to ignore. Visit one at your peril.

Misery loves company: Tune in for Top Secret Beaches: Brazil’s Praia do Sancho this Sunday, Jan. 22, at 10|9c.

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