Saturday, 29 August 2015

Pink Glitter Shoes, Mud Masks And Being Washed By A Turkish Man

Bonjour and hello!  It's been a little while since I last blogged - the spontaneity of summer has certainly interfered with what I pictured to be the seamless birth of this (so far rather disjointed) blog.   The above certainly marks the beginning of what is for me, the final chapter of summer before I go back to Uni.  I'm feeling rather sheepish confessing that I am on holiday again, this time just outside Dalaman in the beautiful country of Turkey.  Via the miracles of watsapp and online banking, Josh and I somehow managed to book a last minute two week getaway with one of our favourite couples, Jason and Fleur, while I was away in Spain.  And now here we are!

While we were here, I was very keen to try out a traditional Turkish Bath experience, having always been curious about the mysterious but famous treatment.  The Turkish Bath, according to Wikipedia, is a method of 'cleansing and relaxing' - and from my experience, that could not be more true.  The day before yesterday, the four of us had a 'Classic Package' at BCSpa in Dalyan, this included a traditional Turkish Bath, 20 minute back massage and a mud facial, all for 80 Turkish lira which is around £18 or so... bargainous.  We didn't really know exactly what to expect, as many things we'd read had been either slightly dodgy translations or just a bit misleading... 'While this is all happening, there are some big, muscular bath attendants waiting to rub you down.'  But we weren't put off!

We got to the spa about 45 minutes before our treatment, and were given locker keys and shown to the changing rooms where there was a variety of 'spa shoes' to choose from.  Putting thoughts of fungal infections and verrucas to the backs of our minds, Fleur and I opted for the pink plastic glitter wedges... obviously.  We were then told to take 10-15 minutes each in the sauna and steam room, in order to help prepare our skin for the main event.  Following this, we were called into the 'Hamam', and told to lie down on our backs at the four edges of a big marble slab in the middle of the room.  At this point, I did feel slightly like we might all be sacrificed there and then, but I closed my eyes and tried to relax as the four bath attendants assumed their places to begin the treatment.  

First hot fragrant water is poured all over your body and head in small bucket fulls.  This is followed by the scrub: they use some kind of loofah (I'm not 100% sure what it was to be honest) to gently exfoliate your skin.  Now, I had my eyes closed pretty much the whole time but Josh said he had a little look at this stage in the treatment and saw clods of black dirt and dead skin coming off all our bodies, a totally delicious detail that puts my non-existent exfoliation routine to shame.  After that, you are rinsed again with the water, then the soaping begins.  Huge pillowcases full of foam are swept over you.  I literally felt like I was floating on a cloud by this point - the bubbles all expand and are then massaged into your skin again.  This is rinsed off, and we were then wrapped in a towel and brought to the poolside to wait for our massages and facial.  

I won't bore you with the details of the other treatments (they were great), but the bath experience was fantastic!  We were all amazed when we came out and sat down at how good our skin felt, and we all looked so clean and soft, like we had been born again.  After doing a little too much sunbathing in Spain, my legs had started to resemble those of a lizard, but after the treatment my scaly skin was nowhere to be seen, and you can't put a price on that.  There was something so luxurious about being washed and exfoliated so thoroughly by somebody else - a bizarre, but undoubtedly fabulous experience.  

We ended our treatment by re-toxifying ourselves with a drink from the bar upstairs and sat by the outdoor pool to drink it in the shade, nervous of burning our fresh baby-soft skin.  In the evening, we went for huge steaks at a nearby restaurant before heading back to our apartment in Dalaman.  It is safe to say I slept so well that night, and for anyone who might be considering a Turkish Bath, just do it!  We all loved it.

Ruby x