I went to a spa for the first time the other day.
Booked myself a massage and a facial at Burke Williams. It’s very fancy, and when I checked in I was immediately escorted to the ladies’ locker room, where there were Jacuzzi baths and showers and a sauna and a steam room and dozens of beauty products and expensive blow dryers and fuzzy bathrobes and towels, all of which were available to me.
I’d been told when I made the reservations that I should come at noon, as this was when the spa opened, and I was free to spend the entire day there, soaking in various baths with other naked women.
My spa escort brought a number of rooms to my attention during the tour.
“This is the Silent Ladies’ Room,” she said. “You can come here and be quiet.”
Inside, there was a woman being quiet.
“This is the lounge,” she said. “You can sit here quietly.”
Then she brought me to my locker and told me to get naked and please remember to wear my special spa slippers. “They’re in your locker, along with your bathrobe.”
I put on my bathrobe. It was very large, too large. I put on my spa slippers, which fit perfectly. I found this strange, because I am an average sized female, but my feet are smaller than average.
I had an hour before my massage appointment, so I walked to the steam room. On the door was a large sign that said: “Do not use the steam room if you are wearing contacts.”
I was wearing contacts.
So I went to the sauna. Same sign on that door.
I noticed a bowl with bananas and apples. I hadn’t been told anything about the bananas.
Could I have a banana?
I looked around me.
I quickly took a banana. I hid in one of the showers while I ate it, just in case.
It was still only 12:20. My appointment wasn’t until 1:00. I walked around. Where were the other naked ladies?
I went to the Silent Ladies’ Room.
I sat quietly for a moment.
I went to the lounge.
There were more bananas in the lounge.
I stared at the bananas for a moment, then grabbed one, unpeeled it, and ate it. Right there in the lounge. An employee walked by as I ate the banana. I got nervous and stuffed a giant piece into my mouth, just in case she was planning to take it away from me.
She didn’t take the banana away from me, though, so I became bold and took another one and ate that right there in the lounge, too.
There was nothing to look at in the lounge. There was a fireplace, but I’d hardly call that entertainment.
Another lady in a bathrobe and special spa slippers entered the lounge. I got nervous in her presence, so I got up and went back to my locker to get my cell phone. Maybe I had some good emails.
I ate another locker room banana.
I went back to the lounge, and sat down. My masseuse walked in and asked if I was “Leonora.”
“Yes,” I said. Because there’s really no point in correcting her.
She put her hand on my back and kept it there as she guided me to the massage room and spoke to me in a thick accent. This made me feel as though I was in trouble.
In the room, my masseuse told me to get naked.
Everyone wanted me to get naked.
She left, I got naked, she came back in.
“No no, darling. You need to be on your stomach,” she said.
I predicted she might want me on my stomach, but it seemed rude to have her enter the room with me not even facing her with a nice smile.
“Oh my goodness! So many tattoos on your body!” she said.
“Heh heh, yes,” I said.
“You have large bruises here,” she said, poking my right butt cheek.
A few nights before I let a stranger in striped pants and a feathered hat spank me with the riding crop at the after party for the TNB reading series, and he wasn’t very gentle.
“Oh, ha, yes, that’s because of this person, I don’t know his name, and this event…it’s really not a big deal,” I said.
Then massive amounts of oil were poured all over me.
As she rubbed me down, the masseuse verbally pointed out all of my bruises and scars.
“What happens here? You have bruise here, also,” she said, holding my arm.
“I think I fell,” I answered.
“You have scar here,” she said, tapping my chin.
“Yes, yes, I drove a scooter into a parked car,” I said.
“You have bruises, many bruises here,” she said, holding my leg in the air.
“Right, I’m fairly certain I was sleepwalking,” I said.
“Also many scars on toes,” she said.
“Scooter accident again,” I said.
This went on and on for the entire massage.
Then it was over. She told me to drink plenty of water and guided me back to the ladies’ locker room with her hand on my back, telling me about how I should really use the steam room.
I had an hour before my facial.
I stood in the ladies’ locker room. Now there were more naked ladies in there with me.
My contacts were still in, so I still didn’t use the steam room.
I ate another banana.
I accidentally looked at a woman’s bush for too long, and she caught me. I pretended I was looking at something behind her. Hmm, that’s interesting, what’s that? A used towel? Interesting.
I got into the Jacuzzi with two other naked women.
No one was speaking, even though we were not in the Silent Ladies’ Room or the lounge, where we were free to sit quietly.
It made me uncomfortable, to not speak to my naked Jacuzzi partners, so I got out, put my robe back on, and ate another banana.
Then I went and sat in the lounge quietly. I pretended to be very relaxed.
The lady doing my facial came to retrieve me.
She also placed her hand on my back as we walked to the room.
We got to the room, and even though I was there for a facial, I was told to get naked again.
The lady smeared many delicious smelling things on my face and then, for some reason, massaged my feet, which are not a part of my face at all.
As she was removing the face mask she’d applied to my skin, she tapped my chin.
“You have a scar here,” she said.
Then I was brought back to the ladies’ locker room with her hand on my back.
I took a long shower, and then dried off while trying not to stare at an old woman’s naked body.
I put two bananas and an apple in my purse, and then left the locker room.
Many people put their hands on my back as I was walking out, all of them asking how my stay had been.
“Oh, very relaxing, just wonderful,” I said. “Your bananas are very nice.”
Parking was twenty-one dollars.