“Just relax,” I’ve been told – when stress or life has me twisted, has me filled with angst, has me in a tizzy. Alas, when I take specific steps to relax, to sooth my soul, to breathe, to take things down a notch, life gets wonderfully tranquil, blissfully serene. And that is why I muse joyfully upon the Spa at Wentworth by the Sea as it is a place where the command to “just relax” is a simple directive, a lovely command to follow.
Once a year I take myself to this resort, this majestic hotel located in Newcastle, New Hampshire. I don’t spend the night but sign up for one treatment at Wentworth’s most lovely spa. I park my ’93 Volvo, enter the stately and lovely foyer, take a right and am greeted by the most wonderful and welcoming staff. I feel like a star; it smells so good, so clean, so fresh. I get my robe adorned with a “W”, step into my complimentary slippers and claim my spot by the salt water pool.
I exhale. I breathe. I relax.
Before I go on and before you determine that you cannot afford this time, this price, this, luxury, I am here to prove, indeed you can. First of all, if you can make time for a binge watch of anything Netflix, your child’s birthday party, or a funeral, you can make time for a visit to Wentworth by the Sea. In Henry V, William Shakespeare wrote, “Self-love, my liege, is not so vile a sin, as self -neglecting.” Gotta love that Bill, yet again being relevant in 2017.
But now you ask, “Who can afford a day at the Spa at Wentworth?” Well, my liege, t’is you. With any service – from a simple eye brow waxing ($30) to a basic manicure ($50) to a 50 minute aromatherapy massage ($140) comes the option to spend the entire day in the spa . Yes, the entire day. And the spa includes a breathtaking salt water pool, a tea/relaxation room, a dry sauna, indoor AND outdoor hot tubs, a workout room and, well, a beautiful venue. And did I mention it opens at 8:00 a.m. and closes at 9:00 p.m.?
My visit this week included an 80 minute massage and a warm oil scalp treatment. Generally, the word scalp is not associated in my world with anything tranquil, anything good – but on Wednesday? My scalp had never felt so good; so rejuvenated, so relaxed. And an 80 minute massage? Bliss. After my treatment, I had lunch brought to me poolside. “Oh, am I in the Bahamas? Bermuda?” I wondered. Nope. Newcastle, New Hampshire. Warm. Tranqull. Relaxed. And home to Dover in twenty minutes.
But what’s the rush? There is no plane to catch, no flight to miss, no bag to pack. When I take my yearly jaunt to Wentworth, I like to book my “stay” during the week as it’s generally quiet, children are blissfully in school, I am mercifully alone…with a book, a magazine, clean towels, peace. I can, yes, just relax.
So, fellow musers of all things joyful, do enjoy your own methods of relaxation, your own method of the de-stress. Winters can be long here in New England…mercifully, we can escape close by, save our pennies, avoid long lines and relax close by. Thank you, Spa at Wentworth by the Sea for my escape; I shall muse joyfully on my massage, muse joyfully on my most necessary pause and muse joyfully on that salt water pool for months to come…
Susan Dromey Heeter, a writer from Dover who recently let her hair go au natural white, debuts her new column “Joyful Musings” at InDepthNH.org. Dromey Heeter is a secondary Spanish Teacher at Dover High School and the mother of two teenage daughters. Writing has been her passion since her English majoring days at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst. Dromey Heeter has lived in The Netherlands, Alaska and currently basks in all things New England, including the frigid winters. An avid swimmer, Dromey Heeter’s great passion is to bring back body surfing as most children have no idea how to ride waves without ridiculous boogie boards. She also writes about thrift shopping and all things frugal in a column called “Budget Vogue” for the New Hampshire Union Leader.