Friday, November 6, 2009

Sopranos (and a few altos) gone wild in Izumo!

Hello blog followers,

Ever wonder what the VCC ladies do after dark?

Well, let us tell you!

In Izumo, after a full day of sightseeing, Tama – our fearless and tireless Japanese liaison - took several of us gals to the local hot spring.

We entered the building, removed our shoes, turned a corner and were overwhelmed by local fig products at the hot spring store (the ones we sampled were very yummy!).

We were then led into the women’s change room and instructed to remove all articles of clothing, jewelry and makeup. After that, we passed through the steamy glass doors into the bathing room.

We were bumbarded by the sight of many backsides in individual, open showering stalls, where women sat facing the wall on bum contoured stools and completely scrubbed away all traces of the outside world. When we sat down, Emily commented that a picture of this would make great cover art for our next cd – notice how no one actually brought a camera!

Once thoroughly cleansed, we eased ourselves into the steaming indoor mineral pool. The water was soft, fresh and pleasantly odourless (unlike Harrison). There were two lovely jets to massage your cares away, but there was more...

Outside, the lanterns cast a warm glow in the chilly night as we followed a stone pathway under a wooden canopy. At the end we found a small natural rocky pool surrounded by a Japanese garden. Since we were still in our birthday suits, we were glad there was a bamboo divider between the men’s and women’s pools!

Through conversations with Tama, the local bathers discovered that we were singers and asked for a song. We ended up singing Aka Tonbo (Red Dragonfly) and Sakura (Cherry Blossoms) with them. The altos hummed along since in our arrangements they don’t get any words. There were two young girls outside with us who had never seen foreigners before. They were fascinated with our white (now pink) skin and asked us our favourite colours. Their favourite was pink.

Once the bathing beauties were fully cooked, we reluctantly left our pool and showered again – this time, to face the outside world. We felt calmed and soothed, and our skin was silky smooth. We were driven back to the spa resort by our lovely volunteer host, Aya, in our blissful state.

During the concert in Kyoto the following night, we discovered that our bonding experience had created our best blend ever!

Recounted by a few sopranos.


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