The hotel was beautiful, it was quiet and the weather was perfect. Exactly what I had hoped for and needed. Still being out of season did mean that the pool was like ice water and as I’ve got older gone are the days of just diving in. Maybe because I’m now fully aware of the shock factor on the old fellas and heart. Being a dad I think has made me wiser.
I made a conscious decision to leave my phone in the room as not to be tempted to do my emails that I knew were piling up. Switching off is something I’ve always struggled with, even being a new dad and having a beautiful baby boy and being engulfed with parenthood, in the back of my mind work still lurked.
After a few days of sitting in the sun, watching the world go by, drinking beer and reading a book (the constant application of sun lotion in my eyes meant I read a page every 10 minutes through streaming eyes. I was convinced people thought ‘Inside Alcatraz’ was a tear jerker or I was highly emotional.
To rest my weepy eyes, I decided to go and book a massage. This wasn’t an easy decision. Previously in Egypt I had the same idea and suddenly had flash backs of laying waiting on the table and what looked a WWE wrestler coming in and proceeding to give me a massage, by massage he actually just beat the crap out of me. At one point as I laid on my back he stood above me and put his thumbs up my nose and yanked back, why, I have no idea, this was only made worse by the fact that as he was leaning forwards his testicles had come to rest on my forehead.
A lady emerged to show me to the room, my mind now at ease. I just had to explain that I had a bad foot in my best French as that seemed to be the main language. I knew learning German at school was a waste of time. ‘my foota hurta, no massaga bonjour’ <whilst pointing to my foot and making universal ouchy noises> I think she kind of understood, she didn’t massage my foot, or in fact that whole leg. Day drinking had left me a little gassy so as she began to gently karate chop my stomach I suddenly stopped feeling relaxed, the sea noise CD and scented candles ceasing to work and instead had to put all focus on clenching my bum cheeks to avoid letting out what would have of been an embarrassing mood changing end. As the lights flicked back on, I breathed a sigh of relief as I had been successful and for a second relaxed and accidentally fired out a short high noted toot. Quickly reclenching I waddled out. I pointed at my foot rather than my clenched buttocks when she strangely watched me exit, i don’t think she had heard the brief escape. My mind quickly turned to matt who was having the same massage in the other room and had ignored the don’t use the tap water advice and was suffering from the squits – he had taken all his Imodium before take off, so he must of been going through the same level of panic should she being karate chopping his stomach too. Obviously with a far riskier outcome should he fail.
We regathered in the room and had a massage debrief, he had avoid the chop and her massage table got to fight another day. We got ready for dinner and made our to the average buffet. It was a pleasant surprise as we got seated, next to us was Jeremy Clarkson, James May and Richard Hammond. I thought I noticed some film crew earlier in the week so that makes sense – that or they also read the good reviews on Trip Advisor. Like any Top Gear fan I wanted to have a chat with them, but also working in the entertainment business one of my pet hates is people asking for pictures, autographs and wanting to start full on conversations with talent as they’re trying to eat, so I left them in peace.
The topic of our dinner conversation quickly turned to the amount of French tourists and the fact the staff spoke French with ease. Matt and I can’t speak French (well Matt about 4 words, so still counts for zero) but he had gone on a string of dates with a French girl who didn’t speak English and had to rely on BableFish (Matt just got angry reading this part……… Because it was Goggle Translate) and backwards and forwards messages across the dinner table. This really made me chuckle as I imagined a speak and spell type voice as they both tried to pay each other compliments and in the hope it translated it properly. ‘How-is-your-chicken-nice-breasts’. Anyway, knowing Matt had this level of creativity meant we could also interact with any staff that didn’t speak English if we ended up in a pickle. It was either that or rely on my ‘helloa howa arra youa’ French.
From your brain going at full speed permanently to coming to a stand still is a funny sensation and not one I’ve been used to nor managed to fully enjoy. Life has been hectic for a while, prior to Raffy I got a second weekend job and worked solidly 7 days a week for a year so I could save extra pennies for his arrival and put myself in the strongest possible position to be able to support Tash and him.
As I laid there, my body absorbing the vitamin D A part of me felt like an empty vessel as my head and heart were back at home with Tash and Raffy and was missing my cuddles and smiles from them both.
I’m sitting writing Part 2 in Marrakech airport as I slowly count down the minutes on a 4 hour delay. Reflecting on a great week, full of rest, relaxation, great company and lovely surroundings. However, ready to get home now and see my beautiful family.