12 April 2020

Janie is pampering herself. 


How are you spending the Easter break?

I’m on a spa retreat. Gus is climbing Everest.



Yeah, I’m stoked. I usually get railroaded into some epic mountain biking marathon at Easter – four days with saddle soreness and no shower. Thank you, regional border closures! This year it’s all primping, buffing and ladyscaping.


How did you pull that off?

With strip wax. Found it in the back of the bathroom cupboard.


I see, it’s a home-based spa retreat.

Sure. It’s not fancy but it’s great value. Turns out I’ve got everything I need at home, including 7 bottles of nail varnish in the same colour. And did you know that Dynamic Lifter works a treat as a facial? Mix it into a paste with coffee grounds and it’s the bomb – not least because it outstinks the cloying aroma of Glen 20 that’s started pervading the house.


What other household items have you made use of?

I devised a luxurious rehydration treatment with just a couple of items from the fridge door.


Duck fat? Ghee?

Gin and tonic.


Any inventive DIY treatments that might catch on long term?

I had high hopes for my homespun Vichy shower hydrotherapy station. I really thought I was onto something when I discovered the champagne setting on our shower head.


What’s it like?

So disappointing. It’s just plain water that comes out!


Does your spa retreat have an exercise plan?

Exercise is Gus’ department.


And he’s climbing Everest, you say?

Well, he’s climbing the fire escape stairs. He’s on his third day of six-hour climbs, which is really giving his Fitbit a workout. He’s aiming to reach the 140,000 step total by the end of tomorrow.


How’s he finding it?

The altitude is a bit of a killer; we live on the 16th floor. But it’s been fairly incident free – no avalanches, no frost bite, no gaping icy crevasses. He had a slight ankle roll at 40,000 steps but it didn’t slow him down for long. One bag of frozen peas and a few episodes of Tiger King, and he was straight back to the mountain.


Any plans to mark the successful summit, assuming he makes it?

He’s going to text me when he’s done, and I’ll meet him at the rooftop garden with some hot flannels and the Dencorub. I’ll bring a commemorative little cocktail umbrella so he can stick it into the herb planter. We might go Live on Facebook for that bit.


Feats of endurance and pampering at home. Could it become a new Easter ritual?

Please God, don’t make me wait that long to get him out of the house again.