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  • The Storyteller

"Can I Tell You Something?"

Years ago, while on the beautiful island of Pralin, Seychelles, I had stayed at the lovely Constance Lemuria. One breezy afternoon, I decided to book a 60-minute massage at the resort's signature spa.

The therapist's massage technique was really great, and I knew it right away the moment she pressed her plumb thumbs on the soles of my feet during the feet bath. Ahhhh.....I was certain I was in for a pampering, relaxing session.

And I was proven right. Marjorie did not just go through the motions as some therapists do, but truly worked on ensuring each compression, each knead and each stroke delivered the best effect. With the gentle sounds of the waves in the background and the very pleasant ocean breeze filling the open-air treatment room, I soon dozed off to dreamland.....

I guess I was still deep in sleep - and perhaps snoring away - when I felt a palm placed gently on my forearm. "Madam, your treatment is finished. How do you feel?" I roused awake, hardly opening my eyes and cooed, "It was soooo good. Thank youuuuu...."

At this moment, she bent closer and said, "Can I tell you something?" I heard her crystal clear, but felt rather apprehensive, as if I didn't want to acknowledge what she had just asked. Hence, I simply responded with, "Erm....sorry?" Now, right at this moment, she took a step closer to my face and repeated somewhat gently, "Can - I - tell - you - something?"

Uh-oh. My brain was going into an overdrive now with thoughts going all over - like squash balls bouncing furiously off the wall and then smashed back on the player's racquet. What would your thoughts be at this moment? Among my dozens of possibilities - all ominous - I wondered if she could detect a medical condition in me that I was not aware of? Or was she going to hit on me? I felt vulnerable, lying there (almost) naked under the towel and with her face looming over me. I tried to estimate how fast I could leap off the bed and make a dash for the door.

Then, without my go-ahead, she continued in her very soothing voice, "You have many knots on your shoulders and I recommend you to do daily morning stretches when you get up, even when you are back in your home country."


I felt ridiculous at all my earlier assumptions, when all the lovely therapist wanted to do, was give me good advice that would help me feel better!

Service Bank: Plus 3 for the kindness, and minus one for the execution!

Reflective thoughts: So very often, it is not just about what we say but how we say it. Think of actual or potential situations, where the team's good intention was misunderstood by the guests because of the how it was said.

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