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February 25, 2013 / Andee Frizzell

City Tour

massage2One of my favourite things to do when arriving in a new city is take the city bus around the centre core and with a soy Chai Latte in hand, look for places I’d like to come back to and explore with more depth.

My last trip to Auckland New Zealand, I did just that. I left my hotel at about 9am and toured around the city via the bus for about three hours while I ideally jotted down spots I’d like to visit again. I noticed not three blocks from my hotel a sign for Traditional Chinese massage.

For anyone who has ever experienced a traditional Chinese massage (I toured through China for a month and was able to experience this amazing delight) you will know why I wrote down the address and put stars around the journal entry, it is truly heavenly.

The next morning I ventured out from my hotel, heading towards the massage local. On my way to the salon, it started to rain, I mean torrential down pour. I ducked under an awning for cover and sparked up a conversation with a lady, an Auckland native, who was also hiding out from the weather.

Friendly by nature, I invited her to join me for a foot massage at the Traditional Chinese massage parlour just around the corner. She had a few hours to kill and decided I didn’t appear to be a serial killer so she agreed to join me. Together we headed out from the protective awning to get some well deserved pampering.

The first clue that something was amiss was the location of the salon. It was deep within a cavernous maze of pathways ways which led us further and further away from the street front shops. We were chatting away, getting acquainted and hadn’t noticed that we were being led down a dark winding alleyway.

The second clue was arriving at the salon, there was no insignia on the door and all the windows were mirrored. Curious, yet not alarmed we entered the parlour  A quick scan of the room, pastel green paint peeling from the walls, a large wooden podium in front of thick red velvet curtains and no other furniture adoring the space, I began to think we had the wrong address. As I desperately looked for a business name or a sign advertising the prices for the services, the red velvet curtain was pulled back and a small Asian woman appeared before us.

It wasn’t her sudden entrance, or the bemused look on her face that startled me, it was her attire.  She was wearing what only could be described as black out bars, (you know when a TV or film censor board blacks out a naked persons bathing suit areas and it looks like two black bars) as a dress. She had on a pair of clear plastic stilettos and had more make up on her face then Mac released last year. She was looking at Rochelle and I like we were trespassing.

To explain, I asked, “Do you do foot massage here?” and I started to gesture with my hands a rolling, rubbing motion on an imaginary foot shape. Now it was her turn to look at me with surprise and shock.

Then suddenly the curtain opened again revealing another petit employee wearing the triangle version of the blackout bars and a curious look on her face.

Rochelle grabbed my arm to stop me as I once again set to ‘charade’ my inquiry. It was then I finally grasp that I was not in a foot massage parlour but a salon of ill-repute.

Back on the street Rochelle turned to me and between bursts of laughter she sputtered, “Ten minutes after I meet you, you take me to a whore house!”

It was not my intention I assure you of that.


One Comment

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  1. Stephenie LaMaina / Mar 4 2013 4:55 pm

    Andee, Andee, Andee… can’t imagine why I like to hang out with you.


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