Thursday, June 16, 2011

Bubbles with that?

After all the rebel raising antics we got into in Istanbul we decided we need to purify ourselves before we entered back into the UAE.  Not really but a turkish bath sounded awesome so it was decidedly so.  We walked it into the Hamami on Cemberlitas Square and perused at the menu.  There were three different combos to choose from, I naturally went with the super-sized version where they scrub me down and finish it all off with an oil massage.  We bid adu to the boys, they went left and we took a right.

And once you come out of the bath your body looks
just like theirs!
We walked into the ladies changing room, it was an open floor plan with three levels, balconies around each level and glass paned dressing room lined the floors.  We changed into our little black bikini briefs, provided to us, and wrapped up in a plaid towel, made of thin cotton kind, similar to a dish towel.  Now that we were dressed we were ready to get the scrubbing party started!

Like gazing at stars
Walking into the actual Hamami, I started flashing back to sex and the city.  Remember the episode where Charlotte would not take off her towel in the steam room, because all she thought were, "Thighs! Thighs! Thighs!"?  I kind of had a moment like that, but then I realized I probably look more out of place because I was gripping my towel so tightly, but the steam in the air and the authenticity of this new wonder relaxed me and coaxed me into fitting in.  We did a lap around the huge circular slab of marble, the centerpiece of the room, with topless women draped across it relaxing in the steam (it really did seem somewhat of some male fantasy).  Some of them were face down on their bellies, and others looking to the doomed ceiling complete with tiny star and moon sky lights to let in little bursts of the outside light.   We finally find a little slice of heaven to relax on.  We laid out our towels and basked in the steam and the warm rock heating us.

Kind of odd that they have kids in this pic, but whateves
look at those bubbles!
It was not too long in my zen moment that I realized, "Batter up!"  I was rearranged by a woman in a loosely fitting black bra and underwear to lay down along the side of the marble.   She dumped water on me with a little metal bowl and began to loofa my arms legs and stomach.  She gave me a deft pat to turn over and lay flat on my stomach.  Once my backside was buffed I was tapped again and she assertively grabbed my fore arm to keep me in an upright and locked position for a seated scrubbing.  To be honest I thought the scrubbing would be a little more intense, you know you hear people say they took off 3 layers of skin in these things, but not my lady just a nice gentle buff.  There was one loofa lady about about 12 o'clock on the circle, who choose not to wear a bra while scrubbing and wow did her puppies give her some extra cleaning power.  She was no spring chicken and no small potato, she whipped her twins this way and that to make sure her bathers were extra clean, they must of paid for the super duper sized combo!

The bird bath
After the initial scrub I was back lying down face up.  She bent over me with this white cloth, it looked like a cheese cloth doubled over so it was like a sac.  She dunked it in the water, bellowed out the bag trapping air inside of it and then wrung it out top to bottom onto my stomach.  I could not believe the amount of bubbles that thing produced!  Whewee best bubble bath ever!!  After my bubble scrub she grabbed my arm and directed me next to this faucet that was dripping water into what looked like a bird bath.  She sat me down, "you want shampoo?"  I did not even hesitate, because yes, yes, I want the whole shebang! After I was bubbles head to toe, she filled up the metal bowl floating in the bird bath and mercilessly dumped water over my head several times.  Once she was satisfied she pointed at the door of the jacuzzi and she was onto her next topless lady in waiting.

After a little jacuzzi time and drip, drop, drying, I found myself in the waiting room for my massage.  I really did not know what to expect as the massage was only 30 lira more which is about $19 US.  I was called into this room with 6 beds all lined up all occupied by ladies in the black briefs face down.  Heck if we get buffed together we might as well get rubbed together.  This experience is not for the shy at heart.  It was a fine massage and after I was fully drenched in oil the lady did a little "beep beep" with her pointer finger on my nose and ushered me out.

It all felt wonderful, by the end of it all I was confidently walking around in my black briefs not even thinking about letting it all hang out.  My skin was glistening and my mind was quiet, a fantastic cherry on the top of my Istanbul sundae.  So if you ever have the opportunity to go to a Hamami it definitely comes highly recommended by me, although be sure to super duper size!

1 comment:

  1. You are hilarious. I wish I could have enjoyed that experience with you. Just like college days... MISS YOU!!