Thai Massage, anyone? OK! Yessuh!!!!

I have been pushing myself harder than usual at the gym since this past weekend when I bought the latest issue of SHAPE magazine and none other than Kim Kardashian with her va-va-voooom hips and  FLAT ABS graced the cover.  😉    So, I became re-inspired. If a hippy woman like Kim can get the flat tum, then so can I damn it!  I always blame my scoliosis and 2 back operations for my less-than-firm stomach and well, truth of the matter is, it wasn’t that flat before my diagnosis or 1st surgery. Hmph.*

Ok, I know this photo has been wayyyy retouched, etc and her stomach probably isn’t that flat. But, it’s still a good motivator!  ^^

So, before I started typing about the gym and fitness, I was going to get to my point: Thai Massages are really INTERESTING! Anyway, I have been pushing myself at the gym way too hard and ended up lifting weights that were too heavy for my strength/ability, etc…and I pulled a muscle. A big one, too. My left shoulder blade and the whole surrounding area including the left side of my neck have been so sore and painful these past few days. Yesterday it was worse and I could barely turn my neck to the left so I went to get  a massage after work. I finished work at 10:00pm but figured ~~eh, this is Korea. Places stay open really late. 🙂  And I was right, they were open!

My coworker (male) had already been to this Thai Massage place and he said it was good so I went. I was worried that it’d seem “odd” that I, a female, was going into a Thai Massage place at 10:30pm. HAHAHAHA I went there thinking the place is legit, though. Although…more on that in a bit.

I didn’t know what to expect, this was my first-ever Thai massage. I have had hundreds and hundreds of massages since I have had a back condition for the past 14 years but once again…I digress. I remembered once I was laying on the mat (on the floor–there was no massage table) that at one point back home in California I had passed a shop that said Thai Massage and I had looked into getting a massage there and the gal said it would have been $150 for an hour and it involved a lot of stretching as well as massage. But I didn’t know WHAT sorts of stretches, etc. You know? And I thought that it was a bit pricey in my mind so I passed on Thai Massage in California. However, Thai Massage in Korea is only about US $41.00 for an hour and  $58.00 for 1-1/2 hrs including “hot” oil on your back. I obviously splurged on the hour and a half session with the hot oil thinking that would be the best for my excruciating neck and left shoulder pain. 🙂

The shop is on the 5th Floor of a building that has a billiard hall, a couple of restaurants and umm, I believe a “Love Motel” (a pay- by-the-hour place if you get my drift)  in it. Oh, I forgot to mention, it’s about 3 blocks from where I live and I felt as though I were in a different city when I was around that part of town. I always find that amazing…only 3 blocks away and I could feel a slight “ooze” of debauchery. ^^ Hey, it’s Korea. When I left the building at midnight, a man was staring at me and started to follow me–I practiced one of my energy tricks where I sent him REALLLY strong, negative energy  and basically thought in my mind, “SCRAM, pal!” and he ended up walking into the next building. 😀  Not that I felt in danger, there are TONS of people (men, women, teenie boppers, KIDS) out at that hour.

Let me tell you all about the massage  🙂

I only decided to actually go through with the massage after I walked into the “parlor?”  and it looked nice and clean and once again…not dodgy or to be some sort of sex room.  😛   What can I say?  Ya never know!   The Korean man who was working the counter was polite and seemed nice and I asked him if there was a female therapist and he said YES.

So, I paid my 70,000 won for an hour and a half with the hot oil and he led me down a semi-short hallway into a back room that had a lockable closet/cabinet for me to put my clothes and purse inside (with a key that I held onto). The cabinet also had a dorky polyester Korean-style jimjilbang uniform-type of shirt and shorts set for me to wear during my massage. That is very common here in Korea. They’ll usually give you a shirt and some elastic waist banded shorts to wear during your massage. This set was pink. Ahhh, I love the pink sets.   🙂

After I changed into my massage outfit (haha) he came back and instructed me to go and wait in one of the rooms. There weren’t any doors in the place, only curtains hung up in the door frames. And each room had a window cut-out up at the top of the wall but there was no glass, it was just an open hole/window in the wall so noises easily traveled throughout the entire parlor. =/

((Side note: As I’m typing this, arghhhhh the left side of my neck still hurts so badly.)  :*(       Sniff, sniff

I was a little hesitant when I went into the room because  up until that point, I hadn’t SEEN anyone else there except for him and I thought that my Korean skills had failed me and he had thought that I was asking him IF a WOMAN could GET a massage there. Um, yah people— I went to a place in Hong Kong where the women who worked there looked at me as though I were crazy and instructed me, “MAN ONLY.” HAHAHAHAHAHAHA  Love it. But thankfully, soon after I laid down on the mat my MASSEUSE walked in. heehee  She was Thai. She was tiny as heck. Perhaps 4’10”?? (I’m not converting that for all you ‘cm’ people out there, sorry…) She was wearing pink leopard print spandex-type pants with a black top… I began to wonder…hmmmm….hmmmm…She smiled at me when she walked in and I started speaking Korean to her to tell her about my pain and she responded, “EH!?!? WHA?”  hahahahaha  And I said, “Ooooh, are you from Thailand???”  hahahaha. And she said, “Yes, yes Thai.”  That was the extent of our conversation except for my random, “OUCH!” or “Ohhh, pain. Pain.” And she would smile and say, “Pain. Yes.”  And I would think, “sighhhhh…”

Here are some pics of Thai Massage that I just so happened to have on my computer. HAHAHAHA. Just joking. I found them just to show you!

My therapist did this one to me.  But I most surely did not lift up my feet for her to sit on. =/   This is what happens when there’s no communication! I didn’t experience the stretch in its true form!

And yeppers, we did this one, too. ^^  Guess I got the real deal.   🙂

I feel gypped!!  We didn’t do this one!~!~  This one looks like it would have led to the first one, naturally…

And when she was doing this one to me, oh my goodness, she twisted my torso to the side and 3 ribs popped! I think that’s a good thing.    😀

All in all, I must say that the Thai Massage is NOT for the shy or modest. One of the first things she did to me/with me  was to spread my legs open, sit in between them and start massaging my upper thigh. I’m talking UPPER thigh…and the therapist uses his/her body in this practice. She sat on top of me, she put my foot right up on her shoulder to stretch me and massage…it was quite interactive.  🙂   Which is why I would think that it would be oh-so awkward with a male therpist. Yah, yah, yah…I know…professionals, blah blah blah…*I* wouldn’t feel comfortable having some male stranger (oh, I mean “therapist”) massaging me in half of the places she did. =/

The hot oil part was a bit of a letdown. I thought I would have had to remove my top for her to apply it, but she simply lifted my top up a bit and rubbed it in and I felt it would have been much more equally applied if she had been using BOTH of her hands to work the oil in evenly, etc. I wanted to say, “I need you to KNEAD me, lady!!!!”  Dig in there!  Think of me as your favorite sourdough loaf.  Oh, but wait—she’s probably never eaten sourdough. Poor deprived soul.

During my massage there were surely moments when I heard some noises from other rooms that made me wonder…but I do think it’s a legit establishment. I think the guy who was getting a massage probably HOPED that it wasn’t, but I don’t think there was any hanky-panky going on there. 😀    wha hahaha

I will go again, I’m sure. I would pass on the hot oil but I will say that when I got home I felt as good as I usually do after I complete a yoga workout!  Kewl.  And all I did was lay there. Hey, all my peeps who don’t want to workout —here’s a tip:  just get a Thai massage everyday. HAHAHA    It might just keep you in shape.    😀     Or at least lubricated and pain-free!

“I don’t fear death because I don’t fear anything I don’t understand. When I start to think about it, I order a massage and it goes away.”  –Hedy Lamar

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June 10, 2010. Tags: , , , , , , , , , . Health, Uncategorized.

2 Comments

  1. Osea replied:

    Sorry to hear about your strain/sprain/tear, Celeste. On the other hand, I’m glad you have a strain/sprain/tear because it was the inspiration for yet another great blog. I see a pattern here: you’re incapable of writing a bad blog.

    I loved the slightly saucy, sexual overtones–added greatly to the humor.

    You go, girl!
    Osea

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