In 2009 I traveled to Senegal for training and this was the most excruciating training I have ever had. I attended an international school for an African Contemporary Dance Workshop. The school was situated in a village called Tubab Dialaw. Senegalese people are the kindest folk in Africa.
What was hard and Excruciating was the training.
Dance training is a dance studio is not child’s play. Imagine experiencing the same kind of training on sand not just any Sand but beach sand. We had instructors coming from around the world and they were unforgiving. Their techniques we totally unalike. While one focused on head movement would be focusing on the legs, some on the torso, and so on. At the end of the day, the body was mush, beaten, and Battered. Half of the group were in muscle patches. This would go on for a little over two months.
That was painful. As we switched to different dance spaces the body was worked to a pulp. Don’t get me wrong the spaces were world-class. Both dance studios had the most amazing views. The sand studio was overseeing a grand lagoon. From the class, you could catch a clear view of the Atlantic Ocean. While the floored studio with dance mats oversaw a great desert with amazing desert foliage, with hundreds of Baobab trees at a distance.
This beauty was exquisite but it did not curb the number of muscle injuries we were all getting. There was a local masseur, who you could book for an hour. That only helped for that session. Then the pain would be back.
Back home to my loving wife.
They say wives get the best gifts ever. I have to agree with this notion, 100%. I returned to a wonderful meal that I so much needed. There is nothing like a home-cooked meal after two months of legume, “Beesup” – Juice made from fruits and flowers of a cactus that grows in Senegal and the most invigorating coffee (cafetuba). These delicacies would be sorely missed, as I got home to enjoy my wife’s culinary skills, which I missed so dearly.
To my surprise, SPA – on the day after.
I was driven to a suburb in one of the most affluent parts of Gauteng. I was dropped off, like sending your child off for their first day of school, and was told to enter a building. I was welcome with love that I did not expect from strangers, it was not long, with a glass of bubbly I felt at home. “Goodday Sir My name is … I will be your masseuse for the day, please come with me. What? What is my wife doing? Remember this was my first time.
I was taken into a cubicle, “Please take your clothes off and were this towel and your robe over it”. You may take a shower before we start. This was the most strange environment for an African man. Did I think to myself, sink or swim? Adapt or perish! I took my shower and cooled down a bit as it was a hot day. My wife should have told me, I am not wearing my best socks or underwear for this place!
I was started with a body scrub. Tiny little rocks in an oily wash gel rubbed gently over my back, neck, arms, and legs. My body relaxed into this tantalizing sensation all over my body. Soon my whole body was done and off to my third shower of the day. Exfoliation is the term that was used.
Waiting in a jacuzzi, I thought to myself, it is done. Please, Sir, follow me to that cubicle, being more relaxed this time, I complied. You can take off your robe. Oh! Here comes a bowl with boiling water and rocks the size of my child s fist. On to my back it went, I thought I was going to squeal like a baby. Hold on, wow the most amazing feeling. My head was working overtime trying to resolve this conundrum. Why am I not burning? Water, boiling, rocks, heat, and this? The rocks were not so hot I can’t explain the science. While my head was spinning, a gentle touch on the sides of my small head. I think I was hypnotized.
I was back in Senegal, feeling these sensations, during one of the lessons, on pain. But no! I felt only lightened, and airy. I remembered it felt this way, on my flight back home.
The rocks were moved from my heated back and the soft but hard caress moved from my head now to the rest of my recuperating body. I have never felt fast healing like that.
I have never done this for my wife. I don’t feel as guilty as I should because this is what she gets most days at home, a loving massage with oils from a converted husband.
I would recommend the SPA and rate it 10,5 out of 10. The best gift ever.