Going for a Shvitz
Life is stressful nowadays with this whole global recession. The gap between rich and poor is growing by the day, people losing their homes by the hour, and people are getting fired by the minute. Vacation is out of the question for a lot of us because of the prices and different responsibilities we might have now, so what’s there to do to unwind? At a time like this, I like to go for a shvitz. For those who don’t know, it’s basically going to a sauna and sweating it all out. I even had a little ritual before where I’d go every Wednesday. I was reluctant at first, but after finding a Russian sauna close to my flat I wouldn’t miss a single week. I’ve been to a bunch of different saunas and the one I’d advice highest would definitely be the Russian sauna. If you find one around, I suggest you go and try it out. If you find a proper one then they will have two different steamrooms, one wooden steamroom called Banya, and a Turkish steamroom called Hammam. There is a huge difference between them, but that’s for you to find out. I enjoy both of them to be honest, it’s just much more humid in the Hammam. A proper sauna should also have a miniature pool which basically has ice-cold water flowing through it just so you can jump in it for a few seconds right after shvitzing in the steamroom. Also, it’s a plus if it has a Jacuzzi, because at the end of it all you might just want to relax in the warm water while getting massaged by the jets.
I went back to the Russian sauna the other day and I haven’t relaxed like that in a while. My last Cuban trip came flashing back into my mind. That’s the sort of enjoyment I got out of it. Also, you can drink a few brews in the restaurant area and once you’re tipsy, head back to the Banya, and if you can try and get yourself a batch of White Birch branches that they usually sell there and tap yourself across the body with it lightly, it makes the whole experience a lot better. This improves blood circulation throughout your body. But be warned, if you’re going to a sauna and are hoping to do all that I mentioned, which is the typical day at the sauna for a Boss, then make sure you have at least three hours at your disposal, because trust me you don’t want to rush yourself when you’re shvitzing, and plus you’ll be extremely relaxed and tired afterwards. All that you’ll want to do afterwards is listen to some calm Bob Marley beats and maybe smoke a fat cigar.
By the way, the other day when I went, there was snow outside, and the sauna had a side-exit right next to the steamroom, which was perfect because I’d just quickly go out there, jump in the snow, cover myself with it for half a minute or so, and then run back into the sauna. That feeling is incredible. Once you’re outside, your body is omitting so much heat that you don’t even feel the cold snow. And once after a minute the cold somewhat hits you, you rush back into the hot steamroom and fully get re-energized. I suggest trying that as well if you go for a shvitz during the winter. It also helps the immune system a lot by getting your body used to going from the hot steamroom to the freezing pool and back to the steamroom.
Even if you watch all these Boss films such as The Sopranos, they constantly mention going for a Shvitz, because it is really a Boss thing to experience once in a while. So if you don’t have time for a real vacation and need some relaxation, trust me and go for a shvitz. Just remember that not all sauna’s are the same, some (like the one I have in my building) are really not that good, so if you’re going to spend a few hours in there make sure you’re going to a high-quality place even though it might cost a few dollars more.
Oh yeah, and don’t mind the naked men that might be strutting around you.