Today was meant to be totally relaxing. My only plan was not to have any plans, apart from maybe trying the much-raved about cake called death of chocolate in my new favorite Kerala hangout – an adorably decorated cafe/sanctuary called Teapot.

Since in India things almost always contrary to what you hoped it was no different today. At 4am I realised my diarrhea continued to flourish and overnight I had grown entire landscapes of mosquito bites on my back. After indulging in a breakfast of tea and plain toast (hang in there much-talked-about-chocolate-cake, we will be together soon), I wanted to write up 2 posts about a couple of awesome girls I met traveling India on their own. In the process I managed to accidentally erase their photos off my camera which may not be the end of the world but to a photographer stuff like that seriously sucks. Big time. When after that the only wi-fi connection in town stopped working as well I felt I really needed a bit of soul-stroking. Since neither retail therapy nor comfort eating (in this tiny town, with this messed up stomach) were an option, I decided to treat myself to an Ayurvedic body massage. I didn’t exactly know what I was in for but I figured any 50-minute whole body massage sounded pretty good right now.

I looked at a few different institutes which all charged about 12 euros or more so finding the Agastyyram Ayuverdic centre (try saying that three times fast) right next to Teapot charging only 6 euros seemed heaven-sent. A small middle-aged Indian woman led me into the room and said “everything off.” I looked around hoping to spy a towel I could wrap around my hips but nothing. “everything, everything?” I asked again (obviously I don’t usually get a whole lot of massages done, so I’m still somewhat taken aback by the thought of a strange lady rubbing my private parts) and the lady replied “all ladies, no problem.” Right. No problem. We’re both women, we can hang out in the nude, why wouldn’t we? And the knickers came off. A liberating feeling.

My massage lady advised me to lie on a leather mat on the floor with my legs crossed. She took 2 good hands full of oil and started rubbing. Everything. The front, the back, you name it. I’m confident that every bit of cellulite was rubbed right out of my thighs and I should be enjoying a brand new layer of skin from head to toe. I don’t even know her name but she probably now knows me better than most men I’ve slept with.

After paying my 400 rupees I went over to Teapot and ordered chocolate cake. I’m done with rice and toast.