Friday, May 13, 2011
The travelling sauna, part 1
The story of my travelling sauna begins like this:
This old house of ours (102 years old) does not have a sauna. The house was not built by a Finnish immigrant; it is a Victorian-style turn-of-the-century (19th-20th) tall brick house that has no Finnishness in its construction at all. It is unlike any house I grew up in, many that were built by my dad. None of the people who have lived in this house over the years, and there must have been quite a few, felt the need to put a sauna in the basement.
When we moved out of our previous house, which did have a sauna in the basement that had been built by the previous owners, descendents of Finnish immigrants, I lamented the loss of the sauna. How am I going to manage without a sauna?
About a year ago, we had a leak in a tap in the basement. Whoever had done some remodelling in the basement in the 1970s made the mistake of hiding this tap inside some panelling. Smart guy. Obviously, not a Finlander. Somehow over the years, the tap squeaked itself open unbeknowst and water leaked for quite some time, ruining walls and panelling and stuff in boxes.
Once my son had ripped out all the walls, I said happily, "Now, we can put in a sauna! Don't put up any sheetrock; I want a small sauna right here. Either build the sauna or buy a small pre-fab sauna kit and set it up right here."
Well, eventually, my son found the sauna he wanted to put in the basement.
"Mom. Look at this," he said. I looked over his shoulder at the laptop. "It's an infra-red sauna. It's really easy to set up. It's not very expensive. It's small and nice. It's made of wood and has a glass door. You just plug it in, warm it up a bit, and go sit inside." He told me a bit about how it worked. "Mom. You'll like it."
"I don't want an infra-red sauna," I said. "I want a regular sauna. How can it be a sauna if you can't throw water on the rocks? I can't sit in a dry sauna. What is this infra-red energy? Is it even safe? What? Am I going to be micro-waving my body? I don't think so. It doesn't make any sense to me. Get me a regular sauna. Forget this infra-red stuff."
"Mom. Canadian Tire has an infra-red sauna for sale this week. It's $799 from $1200. You'll like it. It detoxifies; it warms up like a regular sauna; you'll sweat, feel relaxed. You'll like it. You just have to get used to a different kind of sauna. Don't be so stubborn. So, it's different from what you're used to. Mom. Don't be so stubborn."
"No, I don't want an infra-red sauna. I want a real sauna."
End of the week came.
"Mom. Dad says let's get the infra-red sauna. It's easy to put in; a regular sauna is way too much work to build. Look at it this way: we'll use the infra-red sauna for awhile and if you don't like it, we can sell it and then put in a real sauna."
I could see that I would not be getting a real sauna any time soon.
"Whatever...Go get the infra-red sauna then. I don't care. I don't think I'm going to like it, though."