Readers' Submissions

A Visit To The Spa



I have been through the battle of field on the 302 and the 9. I have witnessed my fellow man busted and broken on the side of the road. I have survived the heat and humidity of the Central Plains. And hills, yes the hills, I have humped the meanest of them in intense heat and humidity. I have climbed out of the stinky, hot and humid lowlands of the Pasak River basin and have made the brutal climb to the Korat Plateau. I have been drenched in sweat, encrusted with salt, and layered in fine red Isaan dirt. I have drunk ten liters of water that led to not a drop of pee. I have slept in hotels with pillows made of stone.

For twelve days I rode my bicycle from my wife’s house in Nonthaburi to Mukdahan on the Mekong, then turned around and continued on to Surin. I have witnessed some of the most beautiful places I have ever seen. I have met some f the nicest people that I have ever met. I had the time of my life all while beating the shit out of my body.

The second to last day of the ride consisted of 158 km from Mukdahan to Roi Et. Temperatures were in the mid 90f’’s the winds that were supposed to be helping weren’t, and my ass was being kicked from Moeiwadi to Phong Thong and back again.

I get to Roi Et check into the Roi Et City Hotel and clean up. I go out to eat and when I returned to the hotel I noticed that they have the Bangkok Post on one of those sticks in the lobby. I sit down and read it. I can’t tell you of any of the stories that I read that day, but I can tell you of an advert that I saw. It was a lady in a bathtub filled with flowers. Another lady was pouring water on her from a little bottle. At that moment I decided I wanted to be treated like a queen. I wanted to be that lady soaking in the tub with flowers all around. I wanted a pour cleansing facial. I wanted to be exfoliated. I wanted to be pampered.

Today I am in Bangkok and the window of opportunity has just opened. I make my way from the World Trade Center over to Sukhumvit Soi 25. Arriving at Suk Soi 25 it does not appear that it would be the place for a spa that advertises in the Bangkok Post, but then this is Bangkok and at the end of a very short soi there is the Divana Spa.

Before I hit the front door I am greeted by a wonderfully cute young lady, who escorts me in. Cold towels and tea are brought out for me. I am given a menu of the various programs and am asked what I would like. “I want to soak in a tub with flowers” I reply like an idiot. The program that includes the soak is a three course one, body scrub, oil and soak. It will take three hours and cost 3500 baht. It sounds good, I take it.

The good news is that I don’t have to embarrass myself in my naturalness. The bad news is that I have to embarrass myself in a pair of Speedo like underwear.

Let the games begin.

Stage One: The Body Scrub.

To complete this stage the therapist begins by rubbing in a sesame honey body scrub. The back side is worked on first and she goes by quarters. I am covered in not only the Speedos but also a sheet. Only the portion being worked on is exposed. After the application of the body scrub a layer of oil is then worked in. Once this is completed a layer of mud is worked in. Then lay and allow the mess to dry, flip over and do the front. Once I am completely covered with this it is showered off. As I have been blessed with a fine coat of fur this is not an easy task. Once clean and dry I enjoy some more tea and a small fruit tray before stage number two.

Stage Two: The Balancing Oil.

I’ve chosen orange based balancing oil for this stage. It is applied in the same manner as in stage one, side by side, quarter by quarter. Massage is more of an ingredient in this stage as opposed to the first and the therapist has this down. There is firmness but the pain is missing, it feels fantastic. This is one of the most relaxing experiences of my life, at times I think I have fallen asleep, but I wish to stay awake so that I may enjoy it. Yet this is only a prelude to stage three.

Stage Three: The Bath

I have ridden camels past the pyramids of Egypt. I have watched the sunrise over the Taj Mahal. I have smashed the perfect one wood draw down the 18th fairway at Pebble Beach. Oh, but these pale compared to the nirvana that I have just slid into. For now I was luxuriating in a bath with flowers in it. It was just like the lady in the advert, except now it was my turn. I frolicked and soaked, and soaked and frolicked, for now I was a queen. But alas, my time was up. The three hours have passed in what seemed like the blink of an eye.

Although happy endings were not on the program menu at the spa, my entire body felt like one huge giant happy ending when I stepped out the door to begin the long trek back to Nonthaburi.

To read about my bike trip visit: www.laos.crazyguyonabike.com

Stickman's thoughts:

3,500 baht? Yikes! Dana could get a dozen girls on the "boardwalk" for that!