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  • "Inappropriate..." a friend sang.

    "Which part?" I laughed.

    We were all wearing wraps approximately the same size and thickness of bandannas as we sat in the herbal steam with our friends boyfriend. She didn't make an appearance until he'd made his way to the hot box with leaves.

    I followed him there, to the box, and averted my unseeing eyes as I tried to figure out how I get in as he got out. I regretted not the fact that my eyeglasses were back in the room were I'd had my Ayurveda massage.

    Where we'd had our massages.

    They partnered us up by the twosies, twosies for the massage. Four women, divided into pairs. Two men. Theoretically, there was a curtain between us but when the fan kept blowing it open, the women rubbing my roommate and I just tied it up.

    "Eyes closed," I thought with each passing moment. "Eyes closed. Eyes closed. Eyes closed."

    From head, shoulders and neck to the back, arms and hands through the legs and feet and back up again to the chest and I nearly burst out laughing.

    "Dan would love this," I thought of a friend as I fought to keep a smirk from a face during the side-by-side chest massage with a girl I didn't know before Sunday. It just seems so absurd.

    To be fair, the massage (in full) plus steam and hot box melted weeks' worth of tension. The antiseptic leaves in the sauna even seemed to heal the bites from fire ants I had gotten earlier when I went down to the river to pet an elephant.

    As I lay on the table with tension melting and thunder booming outside, as rain pounded on the roof over the dimly-lit room, I knew I had made the right choice for the price of less than $30 and one afternoon.

    It did seem slightly inappropriate, though. With mostly naked in the sauna with our friend's boyfriend. And later, getting towel dried by a stranger. And the chest massage. Of course, I planned to do it again before heading home.
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