S&M Massage Parlor?

An ant. I’m a tiny little insect participating in the beautifully choreographed dance that is Hong Kong. Actually, I’m a giraffe in a maze of black haired talking heads on cellphones, who are usually about the height of my chest. If you’ve ever imagined a place where everything is done in the absolute smartest way, well I think we’ve found it. A transportation system that seems to have been designed by Einstein, and a better way to do just about everything. Singapore and Hong Kong have impressed me to say the least; I could really see myself moving here. I’m a huge advocate of Traditional Chinese Medicine or TCM for short and I’ve been seeing a practitioner in Montreal for the past ten years. One of the reasons why I was so excited about coming to Asia was that these types of treatments are the norm here, and I am more than ready to take advantage of the resources now available to me. A significant lesson that TCM has taught me is, “No pain, no gain.” Acupuncture, acupressure,
cupping and various forms of massage can be quite painful.  Just when I can’t possibly endure one more moment, the treatment is usually over and results are achieved even after one session.  So far I’ve had Indonesian and Thai reflexology, acupuncture, cupping and have tried several different herbal remedies including Tortoise Plastron jelly and Bird’s Nest concentrate. The most excruciating experience was the Thai reflexology.  During treatment the masseuse and I had a lovely chat about the pros and cons of living in Singapore, as I lay there grinding my teeth, biting my lip and trying not to scream, “Stop” at the top of my lungs. We discussed how safe and clean it is and the amazingly, magnificent food (more on that later). Just when I thought things couldn’t possibly get anymore agonizing, he started punching my feet and calves full force. Large pools of tears welled up in my eyes and I wondered if I had stepped into a dungeon instead of the massage parlor decoratively advertised on the storefront window. Somehow Singapore has solved the eternal problem of homelessness. One of the ways they have done this is that government housing is available for as low as 100 dollars a month. On a different note these were the words my new friend left me with, “In Singapore people don’t say anything about what the government do or you disappear, they put you into the ground.”

The only way I can describe the food in Singapore and Hong Kong is that it tastes like LOVE. The chopsticks touch your lips and your mouth has been blessed with the most extraordinary gift, you just can’t help but crack a smile. An abundance of flavor, this food was made at the hand of someone who truly cared. A cook who
cared enough to meticulously add each special ingredient, and simmer the brew for hours and hours but never, ever for even one minute too long.

After a few beers, there is nothing like a skewer of various types of organ meat sold on the street at 1am. Priceless.

I carry everything I own in one bag right now, which has made me think about what it is I really need. Absolutely nothing. All of my clothes are a wrinkled mess and that eyeliner or hair product that I just couldn’t live without at home is impossible to find here. It simply doesn’t matter. All I need is clean underwear, comfortable
shoes, sunscreen and my baby by my side. We start exploring the rest of China in the next few days. My heart is wide open, and I’m ready to drink it all in like a sponge. Last thought: Baggage. You take some of it with you on a trip, but hopefully you also leave some behind…

P.S. Quote taken from a bottle of Ginseng wine,” We sincerely recommend you drink more for your health. Functions: Improve appearance and reinforce energy, strengthen health and prolong life.” YES!!

F.

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