|Beauty Comes In All Shapes and Sizes|
Now before you go thinking I'm so pervy weirdo, I'm not. I'm not running out and joining a nudist colony anytime soon. That's not what I got from this experience. It's just amazing to me that as body conscious as I am - knowing every lump, bump, bulge and dimple and with "oh my _________ is too big" or "my ______ is too small" - all of that disappears when naked in a group setting. And I think it's true for everyone there - there is no place to go, no where to hide as you move from sauna to dipping pool to soaking tubs and back again and there wasn't any slinking or slouching or scurrying from place to place. Women just were as they were. There was laughter and fun and talking in the sauna - snack bar recommendations "get the kiwi smoothie". And there was NOT ONE MENTION of fat, thighs, the latest diet regime - none of the "normal" woman-bonding-speak that one hears. And every women is beautiful in the sauna.
I wonder how much our body image - especially of American white women - really is cultural? Does our/my "uptightness" with being naked translate to feeling less-than because we don't have a real idea of what other women look like? Is being comfortable naked the precursor to a positive body image. And maybe it's not even a positive body image, maybe it's getting to the point where it's not all about the body - that when you've seen one _____, you've seen them all?
This spa is really cool. You pay for admission for 24 hours! And you can buy other spa services ala carte if you want them. Otherwise, you can spend you time in the sauna and steam rooms, dipping pools etc. To leave that area, you don a "uniform" - a very comfy almost flannel-like elastic-waisted shorts and shirt and go into the open or coed area. You can grab food from the restaurant and sit down in the most comfy recliner known to man and watch cable tv or just take a nap.
There are also all sorts of other rooms - nine, I think, where you can go in (in uniform) to rest, relax, stretch, do yoga, meditate - each with a different theme or aromatherapy. We talked with two women who had come down from Oklahoma after working a late shift - they had been there since 2am - and by this time, it was 2 o'clock in the afternoon. They were just having a blast. It really was an amazing experience. And the kiwi smoothie really was awesome.
Take good care of yourself. Be kind to others. Everybody is Beautiful.