Whittards of Chelsea, the fancy tea leaf and coffee bean shop, gave us the idea for the name of the new massage emporium. They were selling their old shop displays – five foot tall, papier-mâché characters out of Disney’s Aristocats cartoon in their Milton Keynes store. Passing by, I saw Duchess, the sassy white cat. She was for sale, complete with a red feather boa, bold as brass in the shop window like an Amsterdam whore. You could have her for ten quid, so I rescued her and struggled home – sexy paper pulp ears sticking out of the sunroof, and red feathers coming loose and flying around inside the car.
Opening my massage parlour, in a totally unsuitable and indiscreet little residential terraced house, I placed Duchess, larger than life, in the front window for all to see, like a feline lighthouse guiding the rudderless, randy men folk of Milton Keynes into a safe harbour of naughtiness.
The legendary ‘Becky’s Kittens’ had begun.
‘Becky’s Kittens’ was advertised as a massage and pampering service, not a brothel. With the picture of Duchess, the saucy cat, looking seductive with her feathers in the corner of the advert. Mr Pip, the marketing magus, had not produced this art work either. He just tutted, disapproved, and suggested I stopped mucking about and got a proper job before I got thrown in the slammer for the rest of my life.
There were no beds in the new place, just professional treatment couches, and all the girls were forbidden to indulge in any sort of sex in case any coppers were lurking. We wouldn’t even admit to hand relief over the phone, saying a ‘relaxing all over massage sir, with full tension release.’
The forty-five minute booking started with tea and biscuits. Then the gent undressed and prepared himself for an assisted bubble bath and a game of hunt the soap. An assisted bath meant that the lady of his choice dangled over the edge of the tub, scrubbed his back and washed all his bits and bobs, making sure everything was nice and clean for manhandling later in the appointment.
Clients would relax in the hot soapy water, with a tray of tea and a plate of quality biscuits resting on the loo seat, by way of a table. I always provided my gentlemen with a nice pot, with milk jug and sugar on the side. I find drinking from mugs distasteful. But a cup and saucer would be almost impossible to handle in a steaming bubble bath as a nubile young lady washed your willy. So, in the interests of health and safety in the work place, I provided those nice bone china vessels that are more than a cup, but not quite a mug, but had a feeling of quality about them. I lovingly prepared the trays myself, and was proud in the knowledge that I was one of the only people left in the UK, apart from Italian grandmothers, who still liked to lay out a nice spread on a hand-crafted doily.
Gingernuts tended to be the preferred accompaniment at ‘Becky’s Kittens’ to a nice tray of Darjeeling, and caused less trouble than chocolate coated confections. It was my job as the receptionist to clean the bath after every client. On one occasion as I swilled away the remaining bubbles, my finger slid right into the middle of what looked to be a large lump of human poo, hidden in the shallow water. Horrified, with a customer’s soft turd under my long nail, I turned and vomited violently into the loo. Embarrassed, but unable to deal with the lumpy intrusion, I interrupted the client’s massage and asked him to clear up his own mess. My shame gained epic proportions when, using toilet tissue to lift the offending stool from the tub, he informed me that it was actually a quarter of a chocolate biscuit that had dropped off his side plate during bathing – a distressing experience for us all which I never wanted repeated.
After a chocolate free bath and refreshments, the gent was towelled dry by his masseuse, and whisked off into a softly lit treatment room for a full body massage and hand relief. HR to abbreviate it correctly.
The piece de résistance of a ‘Becky’s Kittens’ massage were the hot steam towels. An idea plagiarised by Wiggy, during his market research, from a massage parlour on the Luton and Dunstable border.
Similar to the small heated serviettes you get given in an Indian restaurant at the end of your curry, I’d developed the idea further and adapted it for inappropriate, X rated usage. Now hidden in each massage room was a microwave oven that zapped large dampened terry nappies, reincarnated as hot steam towels, for thirty seconds at the end of each session.
Gloriously refreshing, the nappies were whipped out of the oven and laid over the naked customer. As they cooled, the girl used them to remove the massage oil, and any other resulting stickiness from the gentleman, leaving his smile as the only evidence of his visit to ‘Kittens’.
The clients loved them, and I believe it was these little touches and attention to detail that made us different from the others – made us stand out from the crowd, in a trying not to be noticed type of a way.
Wiggy always used to say, ‘I adore the hot steam towels, but I couldn’t eat a whole one!’
He thought this was hilariously funny, and would say it every time they came up in conversation. Silly old devil.
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