The Cure For Anything

"The cure for anything is salt water - tears, sweat or the sea."  Isak Dinesen

One of my oldest friends and I recently spent five hours at a Russian bathhouse in Coney Island.  As we perspired and befriended the locals to get the lay of the land,  we wound up musing over the many adventures (and misadventures) we'd had through the years. 

This made me remember these two incredible ladies I met at a mineral hot springs in Southern Oregon while on a road trip from San Francisco to Portland, OR.  I was headed to Portland to shoot a book along with my stylist & assistant and we took this as an opportunity for adventure.  This lead us to meet Herta and Bernice.  Herta and Bernice were 92 and 87 years of age at the time and they met each other every day for a sauna and swim.  Herta was Austrian and as a young girl had watched Hitler march into Vienna.  Her first husband was a writer who corresponded with Hemmingway…..she still had the letters!  Bernice was a healer and psychic who tangoed three nights a week.  Both ladies had outlived their husbands and found their friendship later in life.  I listened in awe and wonderment to their stories, but was most impressed by their joy and passion for life.  And of course, this moment turned out to be the best photo op of my entire trip!

Moral of the story?  Never pass up a chance for a swim and a schvitz … you never know what it may inspire.