I know I said that Germans flock to these ayurvedic resorts in their hoards, but they really do! I am the only English person here, two Indian couples and the rest are Germans oh with a few Russians thrown in for good measure, you can spot them by the bling, very tight fitting clothes and questionable plastic surgery. But, why have they all cottoned onto this where us Brits fail to ‘get it.’ Is it that as a nation we are just far too hedonistic and want our holidays to be just that, a fun holiday? Is it that the Germans are far more into health and wellbeing than we are? Or is it simply that they have a masochistic gene which means that they enjoy such treatments as warm oil up the bottom whilst they are on holiday, or anywhere else for that matter? It has long been known that ‘those nations’ are far more relaxed than us stiff upper lipped Brits in matters of nudity etc. And one can’t be shy in a place like this. All treatments taken wearing nothing but an almost there loin cloth and involve a lot of all-over rubbing with a lot of oil. Actually, I am making this sound almost like fun!
The other thing I have noticed is that most people here are here as couples. Now, forgive me if I am wrong, but to go on a holiday with your significant other where the daily ritual involves ‘purgation’ from all orifices is something that really hadn’t crossed my mind. I mean it has to be one hell of a relationship to withstand that doesn’t it? Either that or the perfect way to get rid of someone. I am quite surprised with the amount of friends who have asked me if there are any single attractive men here, I mean really, just let’s think about that. How would that chat up line start? So, tell me, which orifice are you purging from today?
But, to the treatment, today was a gentle break in. After a consultation with the doctor who was then to determine my treatment, I was sent off on my way to return an hour later to be presented with my program. After giving me this, they sent me off for my first ‘relaxation’ massage which was really rather enjoyable. A few oddities to get used to a) being virtually naked throughout b) the fact that she sang me a little song before she started but most importantly c) it lasted a whole hour! Now I have been to spa’s where it says an hour but by the time you have undressed, and then showered and dressed again, you only get around 40-45 mins. Not so here, it was an hour’s massage on top of the pre and post faffing about. Now you can’t argue with that. Everyone looks quite miserable too. Now maybe this is because they are already partway through their treatments. But here am I, in a beautiful location on the beach in Kerala, surrounded by beautiful gardens and flowers, smiling at everyone I encounter, full of the joys of life and I am met with sullen looks and frowns, not the staff, they are all great, but they also don’t quite know how to react with a westerner who is jolly and that is despite the banging headache I have had all day with caffeine withdrawal.
Then I read about my treatments which I start tomorrow. Now it has to be said that in terms of what it could be I have got off lightly or so it appears on paper. I have been presented with a bottle of liquid silage and must drink 15mls before meals. That will start this evening and I will report back. Then for the next 3 days I have Snehapanam, Thirumal, Podikizhi and Nasyam. There you go, what could be simpler?
Oh, ok, for those of you not familiar with Malayalam they translate as:
Snehapanam: Sneha means oily and panam means drinking. Pre-treatment apparently. Enough said.
Thirumal: Massage with oil done by two therapists. Benefits (and I quote from my treatment sheet): Oleates the body, strengthens tissues, promotes biological fire. I am, I have to say, intrigued.
Podikizhi: Podi means powder and kizhi means pouch. I get battered with warm heavy pouches full of herbal powders soaked in herbal oil.
Benefits, and I quote: ‘’Increasing fat metabolism and reducing cellulite.’’ I think that this may be as a result of telling them about the wine ring. Me and my big mouth!
Nasayam: Means nasal elimination. Yes, warm oil up the nose.
Benefits: ‘’cleanses the toxins above shoulder level.’’ I know a few people who could benefit from this!
Treatment sheet note: Patient may feel irritation in the nasal passages and throat.
I must remind myself that this was voluntary!
I do have my programs for day 4 and day 5 but am saving those for later, am not sure I am up to mentally preparing myself for those just yet and putting them into type is an admission of inevitability!