You thought it would be a good idea to do a detox. After years of indulging in all the treats that life has to offer, all the biscuits you mindlessly scoffed at work, the takeaway dinners, the boozy nights and the dance floor delights, you thought it was time to do something good for your body.
Yes, it felt like a good idea at some point in the distant past – now you’ve spent what feels like 150 hours travelling on a million buses, boats, planes, trains, automobiles and more boats, and you have finally arrived in what appears to be paradise, to stick a pipe full of coffee up your bum and pay for a week of starvation.
How on earth did this happen??
Well, your friend told you it changed their life so you are willing to give it a go.
So off you go on a merry-go-round of pills and shakes to prepare for the new life you are going to embark on with zing once you leave. You attend a yoga class, have a steam, indulge in daily massages (god bless the gods of Thailand for their gifts of massage and scrubs), and start to slow down, relax, and breathe again.
You meet a lot of lovely people to talk about your poo with over the evening broth, and together with them and the staff over at the Wellness Center, you have more fun than you ever thought possible during such an endurance test.
The colonics actually, unbelievably, begin to feel quite good – the shakes start to do your head in. you have good days and bad days, days when you can’t get out of your hammock and days when all you want to do is dance and love the world. There are other days when you skulk by the cake cabinet in the restaurant like a criminal, interspersed with surreptitiously studying the menu to plan what you are going to eat next week. This could take several hours.
Then – by the end … you can’t really believe you’re going to start eating again…
But finally the moment comes. And as you eat your first bowl of papaya – and nothing has EVER tasted so good – you give thanks for all the fast has brought you: your mind is clear, your energy is boundless, you’re waistband is loose, and you feel light and rejuvenated. All you endured was worth it. You vow there and then to fast every year.
Zoom forward to a few days later…
It’s a beautiful sunny day and all feels right with the world. After a delicious and relaxing 8am yoga class, you wander in to the restaurant for breakfast, gazing out to sea, and wonder how the day will unfold. Friends arrive, to greet the day with… hours are spent mulling over what to eat, then further hours spent discussing what you ate and what they all ate and then what you might eat tonight. There might be the odd grumble about having to go to Had Rin to get more money, but it quickly changes to who’s just had what amazing healing session at the Tea Temple, and about the madness of the previous open mic night.
Suddenly its tea time – and there are new cakes in the cake cabinet! Oh well, afternoon yoga can wait….
Now its time for a peaceful post-cake swim in the calm sea at sunset, followed by a visit to the steaming hot steam room that only the brave (or those made of asbestos) can survive for more than a few minutes at a time.
On your way home you are blissfully distracted by dogs/kittens/butterflies/snakes, depending on your luck.
Now its dinner time, and you head back down to The Sanctuary where it is almost invariably someone’s leaving dinner – the music plays, the cocktails flow, laughter floats on the warm night air and friends are all around. At a couple of tables, newcomers sit alone, and you smile to yourself, knowing that was once you, and everyone else – and by tomorrow, those people will also be surrounded by friends, and look like they have been here forever, and may also be one of the many who end up staying weeks longer than they intended.
The days of our lives, at The Sanctuary.