I LOVE SOAP!
Most people who know me know that a bar of soap is the best present they could give me. I love great smelling soap!
Two years ago my friend Lois and I were in Brazil visiting another friend, Jean, who was working at the American Consulate in Rio de Janeiro. While there, Lois and I took a side trip to Iguassu Falls on the Brazil/Argentine border.
Our travel agent had booked us into the outrageously expensive Hotel das Cataratas. Although had I known at the time how much it would cost, I probably would have vetoed it, but it really was worth it. This is the only hotel inside the Iguassu National Park and from our absolutely over-the-top luxurious room, we could see the beginning of the magnificent, thundering water falls.
But I digress …
One of the perks of being in a five star hotel is the soap. Oh, yeah, big bars of absolutely divinely smelling, locally made soap. One was rose, which neither of us used, and the other was something exotic and indescribable. Slightly vegetative — jungle flowers like hibiscus and jasmine with perhaps some crushed leaves. Wow! I fell in love with this and when I got home, I Googled it but it is only available in Rio at a handful of stores. Jean later sent me a huge box with a dozen bars of soap by that company. Oh, yum!
So, today on Groupon they have a “today only $10 special” and I paged through the 50 or so offers. And, oh my gosh, there were all kinds of soaps! I’m apparently not the only one who loves soap! However, some of them were a bit strange — and let’s start with Goatmilk Soap. Really?
Now, truly, I don’t know what soap is made out of, but at least in Colonial American I think it was tallow. (See, I was paying attention in third grade!) These days I’m sure it’s something much more elegant like, glycerin and, uh, goat’s milk. Really? So now I’m scrolling down and I see:
- chocolate soap
- sesame soap
- orange spice
- apple cinnamon
Oh, man, I would have to get out of the shower and go immediately to the kitchen for something to eat! Maybe apple cinnamon crunch with sesame seeds and coconut, topped with orange zest and chocolate! And, of course, a glass of goat milk to wash it all down.
But there was also a couple of rice soaps: there is Red Jasmine Rice and Thai Rice, and there’s green seaweed and eucalyptus. I could live with those, but doesn’t the idea of smelling like something edible seem a little odd to you? It does to me.
I have saved the most exotic — if that’s the word — for last. It is a chunk of dark, unformed mass. The name is “Dudu Osun African Black.” I looked at this for a long time. Dudu. Black. African. I picture elephants and rhinos and large chunks of dark unformed masses lying on the Veldt. Not a pretty picture. And you want to rub this all over your body? Um, let’s think about this. Clicking on the picture, I read their description: “palm kernel oil, honey, aloe vera and all natural ingredients.” It actually doesn’t sound bad, but I wonder what it smells like. Besides, “all natural” doesn’t necessarily mean “good.” I mean poison ivy is natural, you know?
In spite of the honey and and aloe vera, black soap does not appeal to me. Especially when it comes from a land of large mammals and the soap is called Dudu. Nope, sticking to the Brazillian jungle soap that smells like hibiscus and crushed leaves. Much better!