Tuesday, 12 January 2016

A memorable birthday

I drove over to Stobo Castle on Sunday afternoon. It's only just about an hour away, so the journey was quite relaxing, but the flooding on the way was incredible. Water all over the road and the snow and rain just added to it all. However, I got there just fine and was given a lovely room that looked over to the hills. My room was warm and toasty, with gorgeous wallpaper and loads of room, but I had no time to sit about as I had to get down to the spa to have a swim and go in the jacuzzi before my first massage.

After a relaxing couple of hours in the spa I went back to my room and changed into clothes for dinner. One of the things I really like about spa days is that you slob about in a cozzie and bath robe for most of the time, which adds to the whole pamper experience, but it's also nice to get real clothes on too.

When it came to dinner I decided to join the talk table and was joined by some lovely people, who were all up for a laugh and great fun to be with. There were 8 of us and we all had a glass of wine, which added to the jollity.

I woke up on my actual birthday to the bluest of skies, which was such a wonderful surprise. Also, at Stobo they give your car a wash, so mine looked lovely and sparkly and it felt like an extra birthday present.

The view from my window, complete with my newly washed, sparkling white car

I started my day (after a filling breakfast and a bit of a rest) going to the stretch class. I couldn't quite remember if it started at 9 or 9.30 so got there for 10 to just in case. I decided as I was waiting to do some qiqong and there I was practising when the fitness manager came in to get the room ready (I discovered that the class started at 9.15!) and she told me to carry on. When I finished she started asking me all about it and I told her about my teaching it in Thailand, but then some others came to join in the class so we got on with that.

It was a good class and a great way to start the day. At the end the fitness manager asked if she could have a word and she then asked me if I'd be interested in coming to teach qiqong at Stobo! I was completely taken by surprise, but, in the spirit of my current way of thinking, I said yes, I'd give it a go and trial it to see how it worked. How weird is that?

From there I went to full on pampering. I had an incredible Neom sleep massage, which was fab and then, after a long bout of relaxing, lunch followed by reflexology, more relaxing and then a facial followed by a bit more relaxing and then I only had a short amount of time to get ready for dinner.

I decided to buy our table a couple of bottles of wine to celebrate my birthday and although the others offered to pay, I really wanted to give rather than receive. We had a lovely meal and then a few of us headed off for the hot tub to spend an hour under the stars. We even had a bit of rain but it just added to the experience.

One of the folk in the tub was a hairdresser and she and I got talking. She apparently has people jetting in from all over the UK to take up her services in Perth. She then went on to tell me what she'd do with my hair... I needed no more info and am now booked in to go see her on the weekend. A new 'do' for a new year!

I went to bed feeling very complete and together with messages from some lovely people in my life, I just couldn't have asked for better.

Today I woke up to grey skies and snow! So different from yesterday. Had a swim and a steam and a jacuzzi and then it was time for my last treatment - a manicure followed by a quick lunch and then it was time to go.

My birthday was completed by getting home to a phone call from Forfar to tell me how Vespa was getting on. Apparently he's doing really well. He's bonded with his kennel mate, Coco, who travelled up to Forfar with him, and also with his trainer, Sarah. She told me when she first met him she knelt down on the floor and he immediately put his head on her shoulder - what a tart that dog is! But at least he's happy and settled and what's more Sarah told me he's super well trained and knows all his commands really well. It made me feel that at least I'd done that part of the job well. Of course the call left me a bit tearful too, but I'm so relieved to hear he's ok.

So it was a truly memorable birthday in all sorts of ways and definitely for all the right reasons!

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