Sunday, January 24, 2010

Down To Bra Stacks

They’re right up there on my “Yech! Hate it” list along with lizards, queue cutters and people who say “I am looking forward FOR”……


The salesgirls in lingerie shops. Indian lingerie shops at least.

I’ll tell you this: we Indian women are a disadvantaged lot when it comes to undergarments. The number of brands available - limited. The sizes, colours and styles - limited. Sales personnel knowledge on the subject - limited.

After an SOS from KO, who needed just the right kind of bra to go with some newly acquired dresses, I accompanied her to just about every lingerie store on Bangalore’s Commercial Street. While the search was quite fruitless for the most part, the attitude - or more pertinently, ineptitude - of the sales personnel really got our goat.

At the end of the ordeal, I had a thing or ten to tell lingerie sales women:

1. Do not judge your customer and throw her holier-than-thou looks; as if she is morally less upright than yourself for not having asked to see your cloth-bag-cum-emergency-parachute range of brassieres that would put her rosary-counting great grandma to shame, opting instead for racier numbers

2. You will never be an expert judge of size. Period.

3. If you don’t have it, don’t put posters of it up on the wall and then nod forlornly when asked for it

4. Do not assume that everyone needs a white bra; not all women like to shroud what nature gave them in Indian mourning attire

5. Not every customer is Winona Ryder; if you are convinced that all lingerie tryouts are guaranteed shoplifts, put those bar code thingies on the undergarments instead of shouting across the floor, “Madam, where is your bra?”

6. Finally, “Multiplay” is a line of multi-way bras (from Enamor), new on the market; do not act like we’re nincompoops who walked into a lingerie store asking for contraception

Interestingly, we found exactly what we were looking for in a little section of Arihant Plaza… ably guided by… a man.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

A Spa-sitive Start to the New Year

I am not one for New Year resolutions – simple because I see no point in making something only to break it later. That appears to be more the norm than the exception at least.

Anyway, this post isn’t really about new year resolutions or their dissolutions, it is about a first for me. I decided to lose the “spa virgin” tag. If you’re a spa junkie and gasping in disbelief, I’ll have you know that I am icky about being touched by “non-designated” people and coy about baring all to a perfect stranger.

However, with years of being a ‘mouse potato’ beginning to take a toll on my back, I decided to kick off the new year with a visit to Asian Woman, a spa which promised a touch of Bali in the heart of Bangalore. Recommended by the minx KO, whose opinion I hold in great esteem (what with her being related to the Queen of England et al), Asian Woman was serene, calm and welcoming as a pal I shall call "B-Complex" and I entered.

B-Complex opted for the hot stone therapy, while I went with the traditional Balinese massage that promised to relax tired muscles and de-stress mired minds.

After leaving our footwear at the entrance, we were ushered into a room and asked to change out of our clothes. I shall quickly skip through the next few minutes, because it involves an embarrassing moment when one of us inadvertently flashed the other....*reliving horror* least now we know those things are diaphanous, eh, B-C?

The massage with aromatic oils lasted an hour and a half, lulling me into a semi-consciousness broken only by the rattling of pebbles on the floor courtesy B-Complex’s somewhat butter-fingered masseuse.

Masseuses at Asian Woman are extremely polite and professional. No giggles, awkwardness, nosey questions, nothing. At the end of it all, I was completely relaxed with not a knot to complain about.

Once done, I chose to take a shower while B-Complex opted for a scrub in the large tub. We wrapped it up with some Chinese tea while we settled our bills and haggled over where to head for lunch.

What a day! Pure bliss!

Asian Woman – The Villa
3rd Block, Koramangala, No. 374,
Sarjapur Road (Near Greenwood High School),
Bangalore 560 034
Call 080 32510725 / 080 41219198 / 98457 70764 for appointments