One of the things on GPMs “must do” list while in India was to explore the art of Ayurveda, and while I am not sold on the “healing” properties of ayurveda, I will never turn down an opportunity to have a massage. After some internet research, we settled on the coconut bay resort. WCT was looking forward to a beach experience and maybe a foot rub or two, but she was no way as into the “treatment program” as me & GPM, but being a good sport, she went along for the ride.
The first thing in our program was to meet the ayurvedic doctor and have our doshas diagnosed. Doshas are based on the elements & you get “diagnosed” through a questionnaire & physical appraisal. I am a Pitta, which is apparently fire with a touch of water. Once we got assigned a dosha we got a “package’ of treatments. We also chose to eat our meals from the dosha buffet. Bland & vegan but ayurvedically appropriate and supposedly helps strengthen your constitution. In for a penny……
So while GPM & I readily ascribed to the ayurveda cult, wendy was a bit more reluctant, not being a massage person & all.
My day began on that stool. naked. yep. naked. But that’s not what worried me. It was the gigantic rope suspended from the ceiling. “uh, so what’s the rope for, Githa?” Foot massage, madam”, was her reply. Uh, okaaaay. After i spent some quality naked time on the stool getting my head rubbed , the girls pulled out that mat from under the table. I am instructed to lay on it, prostrate like DaVinci’s man. Then about a liter of brown, smelly oil gets poured over me & Githa lowers the big rope from the ceiling. Using the rope to steady herself she rubbed my body with her feet. my entire naked body, being rubbed by feet. Not. what. I. expected.
Treatments last for about 2 hours. 2 hours of laying in various positions while copious amounts of medicinal oil gets rubbed into your skin & hair.
The treatments end with a little chant or prayer & a sandalwood tikka on the forehead. Githa dresses me in a comfy robe & sends me off to drink banana stem juice. The first morning, after treatment, GPM & I were walking up to our cabana & we see WCT strolling along replete with flowing robe, doo rag & forehead tikka. Uh, say what? She shakes her head & simply says “yep. I’m drinking the kool-aid, too”
We left kerala & sadly, GPM had to head home, so WCT & I were on our own again. After some exploration of Tamil nadu, we boarded the ferry to Colombo, Sri Lanka. From the moment I landed in Colombo, I felt at home. I said to WCT right off the bat, “I could live here”. You know some places just feel like home, and If i believed in past lives (reincarnation seems more plausible to me than the virgin birth) which I don’t, i would say i perhaps once lived here.
Back up several months. When I was in Borneo I became intrigued by the Iban people & their tattoos. I wanted one then, but needed a tattoo to mean something. I was set on the place. Inner right wrist. and i knew i wanted words. inspiring & meaningful words. I want a constant & visual reminder of the journey that has been my life for the past year. I have changed, or not changed perhaps, but i have become more clear about my life and what i want to gain & give in this brief moment of time, on this amazing planet.
I found the words. dream big. I never want to forget that i have the power to change my life and make it what i want. At first I thought I would write it in Hindi or Tamil, but then Mother India drove me batshit crazy, and i didn’t want a constant reminder of her. I sort of gave up on the idea, but then when i landed in Sri lanka & saw the beautiful script of Singhala & felt so at home here, i knew SL was the place to get my first tattoo.
Whatever your dreams, know that they can come true. You only have to believe.