Several years ago, after a particularly painful break up, I convinced one of my best friends to take a trip with me. I needed to get away and fast! I had some vacation time saved up, as before the break up my ex and I had been in the midst of planning a vacation. My friend wanted somewhere cheap, so we booked a last-minute five-day cruise to Grand Cayman and Mexico. Neither of us had been on a cruise before and, suffice it to say, neither of us will be going on one ever again.
Apparently cruises are like the movie Groundhog Day for fat and annoying people. At least the Carnival cruise ship we were on. Let’s just say I would have enjoyed a few bearded ladies and contortionists. Instead, we had a lot of old ladies, sprinkled with some spring breakers and some white trash couples. GLORIOUS!
On our first night we met some spring breakers who actually were from Chicago. Seriously? I don’t want to meet people from my home town. They asked us what school we went to. We both eyed each other, unsure of whether to go with it or be honest. I answered first and, of course, went the honesty route. I guess telling college-age children that you are many years out of college is akin to telling them you have leprosy or HIV. Sigh.
There were not a lot of things to do or places to go on this boat, so we kept running into these Black & Deckers. There was only so much dancing at the “disco” I could take (insert cheesy flashing lights, loud DJ whose prime was 20 years ago and couples doing the jitter bug to Jay-Z). One night is ok, but four nights in a row? Mallet, please.
After telling these tools about my herpes and penchant for sawed off shotguns we realized we probably should not run into them anymore, as they were majorly creeped out. Success! My friend and I then just ended up late night drunk in our “closet” (our “room” next to the barnacles and anchor) taking pictures reminiscent of Titanic. I’m drowning!!!
Essentially, if this ship was going down, we would be the first floor to fill up with water and die.
My friend and I did make some normal friends. Our closest friend being our favorite server Zhang, who could barely speak English. She and I actually exchanged emails and became pen pals for some time after the trip until I realized that we really don’t have much to say to one another and I don’t really need to see Zhang-a-lang again unless she is feeding me a Captain and Diet. Apparently this is not yet possible over email.
The weather on our “at sea” days was not exactly the greatest. That’s right, it was overcast, cold and rainy. Just our luck. Outside of eating and drinking, we were at a loss for what to do if we could not lay out at the pool. Aside from snapping at each other crabbily and rubbing each other’s full and bloated bellies, roaming the boat bored was not a great time waster.
On one of our last days, my friend came up with the brilliant idea to book a spa treatment. We both wanted massages and signed up for one that very same afternoon. Hooray!
We were escorted to the changing area, where we eagerly slipped into our comfy terry cloth robes. I could already feel the stress being rubbed out of my tight, knotted back!
Our masseuses called our names and escorted us to our room. THE SAME ROOM. My friend and I looked at each other confused. Um, did they book us for a couples massage?
We entered the room and saw two cots set up side by side. Yep, they booked us for a couples massage. We both looked at each other, trying not to giggle as it set in that we were going to be getting side-by-side massages.
I could see there being confusion if we had CALLED to book these treatments. But we had booked in person. And I wasn’t wearing my faux mustache at the time, so I would assume they knew I was a woman. Not to mention, either way, don’t you just check on this before throwing people into the same room naked?
Long story short, the massages were fabulous. Although it was odd (and a tad bit annoying for me) that my friend’s masseuse was just a few seconds ahead of mine. So basically, it was like having an Asian echo in our room.
“How’s the pressure?” Asian Masseuse One. PAUSE PAUSE PAUSE.
“How’s the pressure?” Asian Masseuse Two.
“Roll over onto your back now,” Asian Masseuse One. WAIT FOR IT.
“Roll over onto your back now,” Asian Masseuse Two.
Although the cruise was definitely not the highlight of my life by any means, I can definitely say that couples massage went down in infamy with my friend and I. We still laugh about it to this day!
When booking a massage for two people, regardless of the sex, it should be confirmed whether someone is looking for an individual or a couples massage. What if I had been booking a massage with my brother, or clergy man or, god forbid, an older male manager! (Cause yeah, my priest and I go for spa treatments ALL THE TIME.)
Massages are intimate acts often done in the buff, if not scantily clad. It’s not a normal thing to do with someone you are not close to.
Thankfully, my friend has accidentally seen me naked on more occasions than she would care to admit, so there were really no surprises, but still!