This is written a little after the event, perhaps it's taken this long for me to process the experience and feel able to commit it to text!Whilst reading Cupcakes and Cherries: The Queensbury regarding a Groupon voucher, I was reminded of the only time I've used a Groupon voucher. It was for 75% off an Indian herb oil massage and facial. I've had mixed experiences when it comes to massages but thought I'd indulge myself one Saturday afternoon in March.
That particular Saturday passed with no massage as I was called on my way there to let me know the shop had had to close for the day and Could We Reschedule? Ok then.
Suffice to say all of the Groupon pictures portrayed a glossy, colourful and professional salon. I arrived at a dingy little office which could have done with a right old spruce up containing one little old lady receptionist in a big coat. She asked for my Groupon voucher and called the therapist out of the 'treatment room'; they proceeded to examine it for 15 minutes before making a telephone call to the owner to discuss it some more. I entertained myself by looking at the selection of products on display in a cloudy display cabinet, all of which were past their sell by date. Yum! The certificates adorning the wall had a distinct Microsoft Publisher feel to them.
I toyed with the idea of 'doing a runner', but I'm just too damn polite.
Eventually I was lead into a room and handed a pair of paper pants. 'No top', she replied when I enquired. I was sat on a wooden chair and warm oil was poured on my head for a scalp massage. Mmm, greasy! I was expecting an oil with a delicate aroma of rosemary, thyme, mint... in reality all I could liken it to was a chip pan.
The room itself had bay windows with blinds across. Blinds which were open. Again I was too polite to say anything but wouldn't be surprised if it acts as a meeting spot for a couple of local pervs.
The body massage wasn't all bad, as was the facial (if a bit 'scrubby'). Two particular points of the experience stand out:
1. Once the face mask was on it was relaxation time "Goodnight". Whilst trying to relax I heard the therapist going to the toilet in the small ajoining toilet. At this point I smiled wryly to myself and wished someone else was there to share the experience.
2. Once the face mask was wiped off, I was lead into said toilet and some facewash was squirted into my cupped hands so I could Rinse Off The Remnants in the teeny tiny wash basin. Now that's pampering for you!!
I pulled my clothes back onto my greasy chip pan body, pulled my greasy chip pan hair into a ponytail and called my sister to pick me up (to spare the public my appearance and smell). I possibly left the salon more agitated than when I arrived.