Foot massages, between Hell and Paradise …

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The session has ended ! Fully relaxed !

Have you ever heard or practised Chinese foot massage ?

Never come in China without paying a visit to the numerous saloons practising this art of living.

I discovered this Chinese habit with my friend Bruno Salgues, in October 2009 when we attended a symposium about digital art in Nanchang.

Of course, foot massage has nothing to do with the so called “massage saloons” you can find abroad, specially in Thailand or in Western countries … No ambiguity about the nature of the massages ! Massages, only massages, given by skilled employees, males and females.

Beyond the benefit of the session, it is, for Chinese, a place of conviviality. All is organised for guest’s comfort. TV screens in each rooms and, beverages and snacks served in the rooms and, since my last visit in the same kind of premises, free Wi-Fi access …

A massage saloon can be a several floors building with numerous intimate rooms accommodating two, three, fours or more massage beds !

Each time I attended a session, due to the fact that I don’t speak Chinese, all have been done in silence, no chit-chat, just “turn you on your back, turn on your belly ” …

The basic service is foot massage but generally, due to the modest price, you will receive a comprehensive massage starting from the feet to the head.

You can choose a male or female masseur. After telling at the desk what type of service you want, you are led to a room and let alone to undress and wear a pyjama provided by the direction.

So, let’s begin a session …

When you have dressed with your pyjama, one knocks at the door. The masseur or the masseuse enters, carrying a large bucket filled with salty warm water.

You are invited to sit on the bed and plunge your feet in the bucket.

Then the attendant leaves the room for a while, waiting for your feet being softened sufficiently by the water.

And when she is back (I choose always females), the torture begins !

Ah the cow ! Her fingers are not designed for caress but for torture ! Fingers steel ! She spontaneously knows where the tension knots are ! And when she presses on, the pain can be so intensive that you shout ! Of course, these moments of ordeal are compensated by delicious moments of complete relaxation !

She conscientiously treats each foot for around ten minutes and then she leaves again …

Now you are lying on the bed, waiting for the next step …

Next step is legs and butt ! In a general way, their massages are more brutal than these practiced by sportsmen’s masseurs in France. Once again, my masseuse finds immediately the painful points and insists on !

Your back is triturated in the same way ! Every place where a tension exists is found and treated. So, you become aware how much your body accumulated of sufferings …

During the short times of pauses, you drink jasmine tea and eat a slice of watermelon.

When the whole process is ended, she leaves again and lets you alone on your bed. You feel quite exhausted but in a delicious state of relaxation…

Last entry … She carries a kind of small bag filled with hot crystals of salt she will apply to different parts of your body … After this last service, she leaves for good and lets you rest on the bed as long as you want …

The final price ? About 90 Yuan, 12 Euros !

Why to deprive of this pleasure ?

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