Slippery Grip: Relaxation at a price! 34



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There was a time when pampering yourself meant cutting your toe nails in front of the tele. Beauty therapies were for that special date, a wedding or a graduation.

I have found that things have changed in the world when I wasn’t looking. Now you can pamper yourself until it hurts. This revelation came to me the other day when I saw a massage on offer and inside the alcove was a hammer. What he was actually massaging I’m not sure, but tools of the trade have never looked so formidable.

I see now you can get a Bowen, a Thai, a reiki and the list goes on. What they entail I’m not sure, but I am game for anything, well most things, once.

I waited outside the studio for my pamper session. The previous client was kneaded, bent out of shape and then back again. They came out smiling which is always a good sign so I went in.

They have this bench that has a hole in it for your face, although as I sat down for the preamble it looked rather like a commode chair to me. Anyway I outlined my needs in the neck, shoulder, elbow areas and was told to lie down.

He went to work on my feet. Go figure. Apparently we are connected all over. I hoped so otherwise my big toe was getting pretty expensive, extensive treatment and the rest of my body was jealous. There was soothing music, scented candles and an ambiance conductive to rest and relaxation.

I know I should have been paying attention, but I nodded off. Well you know how it is when you’re finally relaxed and no one is bothering you. It’s like sleeping on a train only without the neck snap when you realise you have missed your station. I woke up with a snort. OK so I snore a bit. Well a lot. I’m not sure I was dribbling, but he didn’t say anything and I wasn’t about to ask.

My neck and shoulders were given the once over and that man has fingers of steel. He prodded where I’d never been prodded before. He unknotted my knots, loosened my tight bits and generally found every ouch spot I didn’t even know I had. We both worked up a sweat as he unravelled my body into a supple willowy sapling again. Not a bad trick for someone like me who is over the hill. My neck felt like one of those women in Africa with all those rings and my shoulders positively bristled with flexibility. I sprang off the bed, gazelle like and paid.

Of course beauty doesn’t come without a payoff. The next day I was a ‘bit’ sore. Well actually I had the feeling that while I was sleeping that man with fingers of steel actually used his hammer on my body, just for fun and then charged me for it. Next time I think I will stick to hand cream and a nail file. I never heard of anyone dribbling or getting hurt doing their cuticles. I prefer the saying, “beauty comes from within”, it’s cheaper and less painful in the long run.


Share your thoughts below.

Hettie Ashwin

My short stories have been published in America, United Kingdom and Australia in magazines and online. I have published a number of books over the years, all of which have been successful here and overseas. I write a humorous column for the Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette called Slippery Grip.

  1. no to expensive..but if i could afford it I would

    1 REPLY
    • Do research, there are various prices, if you go to the training colleges you can get a student massage for $35. In Sydney. ACNT. Randwick, Meadowbank & Loftus TAFE. Nature Care college & more, so no excuse

  2. Hettie it sounds like you got a remedial massage which is a bit different because it is designed with your body’s medical needs in mind. If you just go to a beauty salon and get a massage it’s different. My kids used to shout me one for birthday. You can have a bamboo massage or hot rocks or just a massage. For an hour you can get from head to toe and a facial for around $80. It is not punishing on your body and does feel wonderful and you are not sore afterwards. It is well worth it.

  3. I have a remedial massage every 6 weeks. It’s my special treat for me and takes the tension out of my tight muscles.

  4. If only I could afford them I would have them regularly

    1 REPLY
    • Patricia you can get them for as little as $35 in the training colleges. A student massage is good, they are being taught professionally, better than these unqualified Asian places that offer cheap & nasty. Just google massage schools, you will find a student clinic. Don’t deny yourself.

  5. Regular massage isn’t just pampering and not all massage has to be painful. It helps your circulation, moves the lymph, loosens up tight muscles and helps with flexibility and balance. And so much more. Give it a try and you might find regular massage improves your life

  6. I am a masseuse or was…. But these days I’d rather donate the money to buy a tent for someone who is homeless! It costs $100 to give a family shelter – TENTS4PEACE INTERNATIONAL, it gives me a great feeling!

    1 REPLY
    • I also like to donate $25 to kiva they help people set up their own business but they have to pay it back to a ” bank” so it can go around and help some one else

  7. Yes had one yesturday, remedial ( which hurts, but gets the blood flowing freely again) would love to have a relaxing one if i could afford them but only go when headaches become to bad or cant move the body. I call it a grease and oil change, and panel beater for my osteopath I go every three months for all body functions. Keeps me sane

  8. My treats are pedi, manicure monthly and als eyebrow shape and tint and eye lash tine monthly. My special treat to myself, and don’t you feel so good afterwards?

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