The art of a day at Banya – Review by Russians Anonymous

Banya hats

Some days are cold and some days are hot… but the best days, involve a banya stop!

Recently we asked ourselves this very profound question: what shall we do today? It was a Wednesday that happened to have coincided with Christmas. Us being the non-Christmas observing type, we had to decide on what oh what to do. There was the obvious movie/ Chinese cuisine, but we’d already seen ‘Wolf of Wall Street’ ( love you, Leo!) and polar vortex was kicking in. So we pushed ourselves out to the only logical destination: the banya, holy grail of Russians. The only place we gleefully sit around half naked among a crowd of strangers and sweat together in unison until we feel like family. And so began our day of sweaty perfection:

Bathing suit – check.
Bikini hair in check, check — ummm… [10 minute bathroom break] Ok now check.
Tapachki … don’t touch the floor. Ever.
Seriously, don’t ever touch the floor.
A hat.
No, that’s the wrong hat – a wool one.
Do I look like a smurf in this hat?
Money – no, cash.
Save a seat in the common area. It’ll be me + Masha + Alina + Marina + Alina M + Irina + Alina Y
Forgot to grab some towels.
Got 10 so I can save a full table.
Tea. Need tea.
Taranka + tea. Need taranka + tea.
Go sweat.
Never doing that again.
More tea.
Kartoshka sounds good right about now.
Beer time.
Kartoshka arrives. Kartoshka + beer.
Go back to sweat.
Ok it’s too hot.
Shit, why did I forget how cold the water is?
Back to table.
More food.
Taranka and beer… so good. Why would I ever eat anything again?
More sweat.
Does this place have a hot tub?
Why am I hungry again?
More sweat.
No, pool this time.
OMG how did 7 hours pass already?
Why am I so sleepy?
Sleepy, yet so happy.
Locker-room to change.
Wow so that’s what she looks like naked. Wish I hadn’t seen that.
Wait, is that girl thinking the same thing about me now?!?
And that’s our perfect banya day. Did we miss anything? Tell us in the comments… or else!

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