Tuesday, 29 May 2012

Give It A Go at the Spa

As you may know by now, I work for Give it a Go at Sheffield's Student Union. This means that I get paid to do some stuff that I have never done before, which quite often turns out to be pretty awesome.
Last weekend, I got to go to the Spa with GIAG, which was really rather exciting as it was a brand new experience for me. We went to the gorgeous SPA1877, which is a hidden gem off Sheffield's Glossop Road. It's an original Victorian spa/Turkish baths and the architecture on the inside is just gorgeous (albeit very very confusingly laid-out), and you would never guess you were standing underneath one of the busier main routes through the city!
Once we arrived, we changed into our swimming gear and our complementary towels,gowns and flipflops and then we were given a quick tour of the facilities. To begin with, we were shown into the relaxation area, which had lots of seats and magazines and refreshments to allow you to take some time out between the more intense spa areas. We then went through into the Hammam area, which was where all the other experience rooms were situated, and also had some warmed marble benches for you to sit/lie on between treatments.
At one end was the plunge pool, at a chilly 10 degrees, and the Tropical Rain shower that could douse you with a tropical downpour, a rainforest mist or an arctic blast-brr! There was a sauna (dry heat but very hot) and an aromasteam room, which is a wet steam room that was filled with a fruity smelling essential oil. I have to admit that I avoided these 2 rooms, as the sauna was waaay to hot for me and the aromasteam room was filled with so much steam that I felt somewhat claustrophobic in there.
Instead, I split my time between the Hammam area and the much larger Steam room.
When we went, this room was lit was red light and filled with Eucalyptus scented smoke, which was actually quite pleasant to breathe in. It took a while to get used to it, because you really couldn't see much further than your arms width, and it was intensely hot, but once you had acclimatised it was quite bearable for about 15 minutes at a time, and certainly helped to clear my blocked nose! The other room in the spa experience was the Ice Cave, which had a big pile of crushed ice in it-designed to rub all over your skin as both an exfoliating treatment and to help cool you down. I have to admit that this was actually really quite a nice sensation, especially if you had just come out of the hot steam room so that it melted instantly on your skin.

I was really quite surprised to notice how relaxed I felt after our 3 hours was up. Even though I had spent a fair bit of time in the Relaxation area talking about Doctor Who with a new friend, I still really enjoyed myself and felt a lot more chilled out when I came out than when I went in. I had been dubious at the beginning of the evening but ended up finding the whole experience quite luxurious-a great de-stress before exams! I would definitely recommend it if you felt like treating yourself to something wonderful, prices are all on the website.
In fact, I think I might treat myself again once my exams are over!

For now then,

All pictures from the Spa1877 website

Sunday, 27 May 2012

Fat Vs Fake

Now I, like a lot of people, love a good documentary, and recently Channel 4 has been giving us some corkers-hoarders (which seem to be the new hot topic at the moment), phone sex, sex toys etc etc. I've watched a lot of them recently (because it's exam time and I should be revising) and enjoyed most of them, which probably makes me some sort of voyeur, but I would rather be a docuphile than a Reality TV addict.
The 2 most recent C4 documentaries I have watched are My Big Fat Fetish and Sex, Lies and Rinsing Guys which have both been quite popular, by the sounds of things. Actually, I didn't watch both of them, one of them I switched off after 5 minutes because I was so disgusted in humanity.
MBFF was about big women who love their (overweight) bodies, and model them on the internet to make a living. SL&RG was about girls who extort money out of men so they can afford all the luxuries in life they desire without lifting a finger. And honestly, if I was given an at-gunpoint-choice between one of their lifestyles, I would choose to be a Big Beautiful Woman over a Rinser every single time.
I have absolutely no problem with the BBW movement. More people should love their bodies the way that these women do and have the confidence that they demonstrate. These women are often mocked by society because they don't conform to its norms, but they love themselves and they are happy and beautiful in their own ways so why should we judge them so harshly? Indeed, normal models starve themselves to the point of anorexia so the "it's just not healthy" argument does not ring true in my mind. If they are happy with the way they look and the job that they do then society should just back off and let them do it.
Personally, I have much more contempt for people who just try and get something for nothing in life. As far as I can gather from reading about the programme (Sex, Lies and Rinsing Guys) these women get men to buy them things by flirting with them, going on dates with them and offering their friendship. I just don't understand how you can have any sense of pride in a lifestyle that consists of daily extortion because men are suckers for girls with a fake everything.
However, reading the Twitter feeds (#RinsingGuys and #MyBigFatFetish) it's clear to see that while the 'stars' of both documentaries get slated, it's a lot harsher on the fat gals-I even found some people admiring the rinsers, but nearly all the comments on the fat fetish feed were negative/insulting. Again, society dictates that the worst thing you can be as a woman is fat. It just makes no sense to me, that just because they are larger women and showing it off that they are somehow worse people than the girls who just make men buy them the things they want. Society, get a grip on yourself-it's far sexier to be body confident and love the skin you're in, whatever size and shape you are, than to plaster yourself in enough fake tan to change your ethnicity and make yourself up until you don't even resemble yourself any more.
Put it this way, which of these two ladies is the more attractive?
Left: Adele, Queen of Fabulousness, Right: Jodie Marsh Queen of Fakery
Pic sources [HERE] and [HERE]
Love what you got and not what you're not, that's what I say!


Wednesday, 23 May 2012

The Endings of Everythings

So yesterday I had the first of my four final university exams, which may be one of the last four exams I ever sit. I now have only 10 days left until my academic life is over, and only 17 until my Ucard expires and I am no longer a student any more. It's a strange feeling, because a lot of things are up in the air at the moment, and I don't yet know what I will be doing in 6 months time, and it's kind of happy and sad. Happy because I get to do something awesome (and as yet unknown) with my life and start being a proper adult. Sad because I will have to say goodbye to some of the people that I have met over my 3 years here, knowing that I might not see them again, and even if I do it won't be the same. I've only got a month left living in my lovely house in Sheffield, before I have to move back home (which is going to be difficult!) so I have to say goodbye to that too.
I've performed in what might just be my last ever USLES show:
Beware The Storybook Wolves!
and I have handed over my USLES Presidency to my successor:
With all the class and sophistication that is expected of me.
so now I am just waiting to get my exams over and done with and then work my final three GIAG shifts and then it's all done. I must say that I have had the best of times here in Sheffield. So much so that I want to stay, as long as I can find me a job that will let me. And I may not be getting a First, but I have had an awesome time and met some truly wonderful people who I will hold in my heart forever, and I think that's just as good really.

And just to keep the melancholy away a little longer, I am going to have the most awesome summer ever!
-Being IN the Edinburgh Fringe Festival with Two Shades of Blue and some of my favourite people
-Hopefully a holiday somewhere nice with another one
-Going back to see my FAVOURITE show (along with many others, I shouldn't doubt)
-A myriad of other fun things, I should hope. No doubt you will encounter some of my adventures here.

So, for now,
Nearly-Not-A-Student-Jenni signing off.