Soundtrack: Footloose by Kenny Loggins (only the line "everybody cut everybody cut" over and over[in my head], for one of they key steps in loosening up the flow of energy along sens in the body is called cut and I repeated it along the body)
I always said that if I were to drop out of school and take on a trade skill instead, I would go for massage. I usually don't much care for massages given to me- most people aren't very good at dealing with my mini muscles on a little frame like mine. Still, massage, to me, can do a lot more good for someone than skin care, a haircut (arguable) or something to do with real estate. So, since I'm more or less bumming around Bangkok without a care in the world, I opted to take a course on Thai massage. Here:I only found out after I got in on day one that the school is not only run by an almost entirely Japanese staff, it is filled with almost an entirely Japanese student body (three girls in my class besides me, a man in the advanced class, and three other mystery Japs [is that a derogatory word? I don't mean it to be] who are not students or employees but loiter around the practice room, sometimes as massage subjects, sometimes jumping in to give them. The only non-islanders in house were Ajan Woot, the chubby co-instructor with a cartoony Asian smile, and Yolanda, an intermediate course flunkie who followed her Thai husband here from Switzerland seven years ago. Yolanda is a compulsive coffee drinker and smoker and she's got dishwater blonde curls that belong behind the register of a late night gas station mini-mart, but she laughs a lot and doesn't speak Japanese so I like spending time with her. My farang friend also speaks a decent amount of Thai, which means there was a good chunk of time when no English was spoken at all. Lucky me. What's the word for femoral artery again?
According to Wikipedia, Thai massage is all about air/energy and how it travels throughout the body via lines (sen). "Massage therapists [that's me] manipulate a handful of major sen lines by pressing certain points along lines." It's not that dough kneading business we do in America, this is Real Live Traditional Medicine.
I'll have to wait on uploading pictures of me personally doing massage (I only took a few and accidentally left my camera at school over the weekend) and the Japanese girls who, of course, took loads (no peace signs though :( ) haven't emailed theirs to me yet. So just in case you don't know what Thai massage is, here's what I'm supposedly qualified to do now:
Color coordinate with client and invade their personal spacePerform torture without client knowing they are being tortured
Have awful hair and help out a friendWho needs a resume when I have THIS!
(I had brought a whole stack of these 2x2 photos and I'll tell you what I looked good in the picture! Unfortunately, I used up my LAST TWO on my Lao visa (shaking my fist at Laos now) and had to take a new shot during lunch on the day of our exam. If you look close, you can see from my pink lips that I had just eaten a very spicy bowl of something ([it was guiddiaw and it was dericious].)