By Jennifer Cash
DRS and Associates

Oh gentle reader – this will not be a tale of a girl and her experience with a soul and body rejuvenating spa treatment and massage over-looking an infinity pool. No gentle reader, this is but a tale of something else. Something more akin to a Tupperware party run amok.

Everyone knows those commercials with a beautiful couple holding hands as they receive a relaxing massage at some private resort in the Bahamas? Well, this was the same image of how I imagined a massage should be and this was on my mind (minus the Bahamas as a beautiful location) when I was invited to a friend’s ‘spa’ party. I imagined lounging by her pool receiving a luxurious massage on a well-appointed massage table (covered in the softest, fluffiest towel) during a perfectly gorgeous day.

What ended up happening was that I received an education about skin care and how to always moisturize and take care of my skin. I did receive a hand scrub and I did receive a facial though I had to do this myself. Turns out that I learned a lot this very special ‘day.’

Did you know that after the age of 14 years old the moisture under your eyes is gone, never to return again? Well, this is what I learned at the “spa’” party. My friend invited me to this party promising massages, and facials and hand scrubs. In my naivety, I imagined a massage table and a day of drinking detox tea as I fell asleep to someone – preferably a man – rubbing my shoulders. But alas gentle readers, my friend doesn’t live in Beverly Hills and if I wanted a full massage well then, like everything else in life, I would have to pay, since it certainly wasn’t on the menu at this party.

The highlight of the day was listening to a man on an IPod lead a meditation as I sat in a comfortable chair with rejuvenating cream over closed eyes. The man leading this meditation told me to “breathe in and slowly breathe out” and to think of practically nothing. I did relax but as soon as I opened my eyes, I wistfully gazed at the pool without a massage table. As the party crowd closed their eyes to the man’s voice, we received an arm and hand massage kind of similar to those you would receive in a nail salon when you get a manicure, if perhaps a bit longer. Not full body – nope – not a massage. But, still it was nice.

I also had a lip mask and Botox eye cream put under my eyes. My hands were extra soft. I learned about beauty products that I might eventually get around to buying. Though I didn’t receive a full massage, there was a raffle, and I won roll-on perfume and nail polish. Plus, during the few hours that I was at this party I met some pretty entertaining women who talked about their own “war” stories of using Sea Breeze to cleanse their face which is considered archaic now. It was like sitting through a beauty history lesson.

Like all good things in life, a spa is something you pay for. It is not driving to a house in Simi Valley hoping for the relaxation you would receive in Beverly Hills. However, you can’t take back experiences and my friend wants to throw more of these types of parties. As long as I buy something, I think I am invited. (No, that is not true. I would be invited anyway. I would probably eventually buy a beauty product if I went more than once. I am very susceptible to brain-washing. I mean I thought I would literally have a very expensive massage at my friend’s house. She and I would order the cheapest thing on the menu at Wendy’s for lunch. Who am I kidding? She is my friend and I would sit through one more spa party just because of her.)

What I learned is that though I am not a twenty-something girl, I see the world a certain way. A very expensive massage with no strings attached? What was I thinking? But, I did relax at this spa party and it was a chance for me to be with friends and the solidarity of women complaining about crow’s feet. In all, I do know that I should use eye cream and sunscreen. This was reaffirmed. It just wasn’t the Bahamas! Maybe, I should plan for my own spa vacation and invite my friend. She would have to come with me right?