My private hideaway
Mobile massage company The Hideout came calling the other day, and before I knew it, my home became my sanctuary.
Ever feel like you’re a silver ball ricocheting around a pinball machine, maybe ringing a few bells now and again but never getting over the line with anything? With three kids, two jobs and one dog to juggle (never mind the husband), I frequently reach the point where I think my head is going to explode and I just end up circling round like my dog does before he slumps down for a nap. Basically, getting NOTHING done. A dog’s life indeed. Well, I was having one of those days the other week when a fairy in the shape of Natasha Greening came knocking.
Now Natasha is a proper superwoman. Formerly the spa manager at Clarins in Cavendish House in Cheltenham, she had a baby in September and in November – yes November! when her son was only two months old! – she started up her own mobile holistic massage company The Hideout. I felt exhausted just hearing that, but Natasha is from a place of Zen and it seems like nothing much phases her and her passion for bringing wellness to others is so great, she just glides gracefully on through.
And here she was, at my front door, ready to dispense calm to my stressed-out soul. I started jumping around wondering if I could help bring things in, make a cup of coffee, clean my house and she firmly and politely sent me upstairs to go and get into my dressing gown. This was my time and she was here to heal. Wow, it’s not often someone says that to you and I felt better already.
When I came back downstairs robed up, I hardly recognized my sitting room which she’d transformed into my own ‘hideout’. The basketball net, balls, makeshift wicket and iPads were all cleared away, the curtains were drawn, a diffuser was dispensing calming lavender essential oil, a wood wick candle was burning and making the sound of a crackling log fire, soothing music was playing and in the middle of the room was the massage bed made up with turquoise towels and blankets.
I was in for a treat – one of Natasha’s Signature Massages, a rebalancing, full body, deep tissue massage which she developed by pick ’n’ mixing all her favourite treatments and putting them together to create one super, head-to-toe experience that can be tailored just for you. The massage was about an hour and ten minutes, but felt much longer. The hot oil felt wonderful – Natasha uses Neal’s Yard products which you can buy from her if you’re smitten – and Natasha had an uncanny touch; my neck and shoulders, both tensed-up repositories of stress, were putty in her hands. At one point, my dog started whining which would normally have wound me up no end, but I was so blissed out, the sound just merged into the ambient atmosphere.
There was something special about being in my own home. I hadn’t had to drive anywhere, worry about parking, get used to a different environment. I was able to let go and get into relax mode more quickly than I might have at a day spa. And afterwards, with the scent of lavender oil still hanging in the air, my sitting room still felt like a sanctuary. I sat and had a cup of herbal tea, decided what I could do, not should do and calmly got on with my day instead of whirling around like a dervish.
Natasha recommended regular four to six-weekly treatments, which I’m determined to keep to. I might just have to work through her treatment menu of facials, hot stone back massages, Indian head massages, she even does a natural glow organic tanning treatment. Mothers to be can get special pregnancy massages and she also does pamper parties where she sets up a foot massage in say the kitchen while you each go in for a treatment. Now there’s an idea… Ma Muddy, fancy having the kids over for a sleepover?