Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Deciphering my first professional massage

So I had an experience this week and I need help processing how I feel about it. Not sure if it was a good experience, a bad experience, or just a bizarre experience. I had my first professional massage. I've said for years that I wanted to get one but could never talk myself into forking out the money to have a stranger lather my body in essential oils. Fortunately, Alyssa gave me a gift certificate for a one hour massage at a local spa, so at long last, I could try out this whole massage business. Well I tried, and as I mentioned I'm not sure what I think about it, so let me just walk you through the appointment. When I got to the spa, they offered me a glass, no a goblet, of water with lemon and lime slices. Very refreshing! One point to the good experience. They also called me "Miss Laurel" which I'm sure was intentional to make me feel pampered and special or something. I guess I did kinda like that so another point to the good. Next, I'm walked back to the "Quiet Zone" where suddenly everyone is only talking in whispers. I assume this was to promote a peaceful, serene feeling, but it was more of an eerie feeling to me. I think I have too loud a personality for tranquility. Minus one point. Next, I'm shown to the restroom and asked if I need to go. Weird. I've only had 2 sips of the fancy water. It didn't go through me that quickly. Maybe they were being thoughtful in asking me since I was to spend the next hour lying on a table. But come on, I'm 24 years old. I think I can take care of my own bodily functions. Minus one point. The next room, is the robe room. I walked into this room a little hesistant. Am I supposed to be naked under this robe? Why are the only instructions on the wall "Use your spa voice" and "Turn off your cell phone"? Those of us who are new to the spa world are left with the dilemna to wear or not to wear? Minus one. Next, was my consultation. This involved soaking my feet and getting them rubbed while small talking. Plus one for the lovely foot massage, minus one for the small talk. I'm not very comfortable small talking with a stranger while naked. Then, I'm asked if I have a favorite oil I would like to use. Ummmm….. olive? Apparently, that wasn't a choice, so I was brought three options to smell and pick from. The first one smelled like a wilted dandelion. (Pass) The second smelled like moldy berries. (I don't think so.) The third one had a delightfully subtle, citrus smell. (I'll take that one) Minus one for the odorous oils but positive one for the frangrantly acceptable oil I chose. Next, it was time to disrobe and crawl into the sheets. Thankfully, I was left alone for this part. Plus one. And then the main event: the massage! It was great for about a minute and then I realized it was a full body massage! I thought is was just for my back. Immediately, I'm embarrassed to realize I haven't shaved since…..well, since I don't know when! I tried to console myself by rationalizing that the room was dark so she couldn't see how bad it was, but honestly, who needs to see it when they have to feel it? So I spend the first fifteen minutes of the massage ashamed of my bushy legs. Minus one. Thankfully, we moved on to other body parts and I was able to relax more. The mood music being played made me think there were probably people doing Tai Chi right outside the door. This was neither good or bad, merely an observation. The back, neck, and shoulder massage was excellent! Just the right amount of pressure in just the right places. I thoroughly enjoyed that aspect. Plus 2 points! While that portion was fantastic, the face massage was a little strange to me. I generally don't have aches and pains in my ears and eybrows. I would have prefered the time spent on my face to be used to continue that blissful shoulder massage. Minus one.  At the conclusion of the massage, I am AGAIN shown to the restroom and asked if I need to go. Still weird, and still the answer is no. Minus one. However, all day today, my muscles have felt so good. Plus one. As I look back through my musings and tally the points, it appears to be a tie. Eight points for each. (That is, if I did my math correctly!) And so it is up to you, the reader, to help me decipher was this a good experience or a bad experience?

Sunday, March 11, 2012

A Secret Society

There is something so exciting about being a part of a clandestine organization. I love the adrenaline rush that comes from being sneaky and feeling like I know something you don't know. However, what's the point of a secret if no one knows you know? So I've decided to let you all in on the secret. Geocaching!

For those who have never heard of this we'll go straight to horses mouth (aka geocaching.com) for the definition. "Geocaching is a real-world outdoor treasure hunting game. Players try to locate hidden containers, called geocaches, using GPS-enabled devices." My family came to visit back in January and we decided the best way to show them around town was through geocaching. My uncle Clint is an experienced geocacher (is that a word?) so he inducted us into the secret world of geocaching. He explained how to play and gave us strict orders not to let "muggles" see us. With GPS unit in hand and a list of coordinates around town we were off on our treasure hunt. I was amazed at how many caches I had walked right by in the past and had no idea were hidden there. We found all of the treasures except one. We searched and searched to no avail. That part was frustrating but 7 for 8 isn't bad for novice treasure hunters. Despite our efforts to be discreet, a few geomuggles did stumble upon us. We tried to appear very casual, like it was natural for us to be hanging out in the brush, bushwhacking. I am sure they did not suspect a thing especially in situations such as the one depicted in this picture....

Some muggles were walking by and Nate decided freezing in this pose would draw the least amount of attention