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Botanical gardens

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Visited botanical gardens but not before calling at a gem factory and a Batik factory. We bought some stuff (cost us £53 for two tops and a table cloth but this represented many hours of work). The ladies earn less than £50 a month (that's $2 a day!).

The botanical gardens themselves were very beautiful and full of smartly dressed school children.

On our way home we were asked if we would like to go for a massage and sauna and foolishly said yes.

Don't think relaxation, think extreme sport. The massage is about one notch down from being trampled under foot by an elephant, except that the man is more thorough. I was expecting severe bruising the following day, but thankfully this did not materialise. The sauna bit involved being put on a bed with holes in it and hot ashes underneath with a cover over the top and a place for your head to stick out at the end. They drip hot oil onto your forehead and massage your scalp whilst you are steaming away. The temperature was about twice as hot as a sauna and lasted for about 50 minutes instead of the more western 10 minutes. In the end I had to ask to be let out and was totally exhausted. Not for the faint hearted (and I mean that literally!). Never mind I was told you will feel great the following day. No, I'm sorry, both Gay and I felt just the same. Nevertheless the exercise was described as a therapy and I have to admit that a minor skin infection, that I have endured for 3 decades, seems to have gone temporarily at least.

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