Chris Johnson

It felt so nice, it even put aside his bad feelings for the Florida Gators

Chris Johnson
Chris Johnson

I recently spent a week cruising the Caribbean, lounging on beaches and sipping cold drinks in the warm sunshine of places like Isla Roatan, Belize, Cozumel and Grand Cayman. The most relaxing stop on this vacation, however, was a bit unexpected:

Gainesville. Florida.

I’m a huge fan of the Georgia Bulldogs, which means I cringe at the thought of even driving through Gainesville, Florida, on I-75. I usually hold my breath as I drive through for fear that I might inhale some Florida Gator air and lose an IQ point or something. For those of you who know me, you know I can’t afford to lose a single one at this point.

Yet, we booked a hotel room in Gainesville to break up a five-hour drive to Tampa, where we were to board a cruise ship, something we do every couple of years. I can barely stomach the thought of a three-hour flight these days, much less a five-hour car ride.

We came into Gainesville in the middle of a storm. It was turning dark, and all I wanted to do was to plop down in a hotel room bed. My wife, though, decided she needed a pedicure before the cruise. After a little Googling and Yelping, she found a spa in a Gainesville shopping center. None of the reviews were by Robert Kraft, so we figured it could very well be a decent place.

As I wrote a few years ago, I’ve had one pedicure in my life. I can’t remember whether it was the result of a lost bet or was a gift to my wife, but it was my first, only and last pedicure. I’m a big believer in the Second Amendment, and that’s why I don’t do pedicures. When I wear flip-flops, I am weaponized.

I walked into the spa with my wife, and the place was nearly empty. They would be open for only one more hour, so I agreed to simply wait. That’s when a fellow who appeared to be the manager suggested I could sit next to her in the adjacent massage chair. If you know me, you also know my next question:

“How much will that cost me?”

Because the answer was “nothing,” I slipped off my flip-flops and practically leaped into the seat. The lady doing my wife’s feet looked at my feet as if to say, “You sure you don’t want us to do something about those things?” No. I’m ticklish. I don’t like folks touching me. I especially don’t like people touching my feet. Besides, I needed to be on a boat in about 17 hours, and there was no way they’d be through with me by then.

So, I pressed a few buttons and this super high-powered massage chair did its thing. I’m pretty sure the chair is powered by a 707 HP with the Supercharged 6.2L HEMI SRT Hellcat V8 Engine straight out of a Dodge Charger. And, yes, I had to Google that because all I really know about a Charger is that Bo Duke used to drive one and Dan Fouts used to be one.

It was the best pedicure I never had. For nearly an hour, the chair pummeled my back, squeezed my neck and surprised me with a few jolts in questionable places. I wasn’t sure whether to smile or scream “me too!” but by the end, no pun intended, I was quite relaxed. It made for the perfect intermission on the way to Tampa. My wife’s toes were pretty, and mine were, well, still weaponized, but I was too relaxed to attack anyone — even a Gator.

As much as it pains me to admit, Gainesville was a very pleasant stop, and the town is actually quite nice despite all the University of Florida stuff around it. Or maybe I was just very relaxed thanks to my non-pedicure. I made sure they got a nice tip for not touching me.

Perhaps Robert Kraft should try that.

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