Pig farmers and prima donnas?

Diane greyscaleMany readers will remember Diane Cox, a popular and much missed therapist who offered a memorably firm massage at her Samadhi business in Earlsdon Street for 22 years, and inspiring Egyptian dance teacher who kept many Earlsdon women on their toes (and laughing!) every week.  Diane moved to South Africa last August to be with her new partner, though still keeps in touch and comes back every so often.

Since settling in Cape Town, Diane has turned her creative energies to the arts of painting and writing.  Her many Facebook friends have been awed by her growing painting skills, and now, with the (very practical) help of her partner Shawn, Diane has finally published a book she first wrote some years ago, and which we review below.  The book is a salute to Diane’s experience in the world of complementary therapy and spas, and the lessons each client brought to her.

Diane’s 30 years in the spa industry saw her working in exclusive health spas and travelling to Japan, Hong Kong and Taiwan teaching massage and aromatherapy.  Locally she taught at Coventry Technical, North Warwickshire and Henley Colleges.  She was also employed by drug rehabilitation establishments, high street banks, Coventry University and Myton Hospice, and went on to set up her own workshops, meditation and spiritual awareness groups whilst also running Samadhi.

In addition to painting and writing, Diane now writes a blog containing a variety of pieces written about all facets of life she feels demand attention, and this year she is launching a new online meditation class, for those of you who fancy curling up on a Sunday evening, tuning in and floating away into a peaceful Monday morning.

Diane’s blog and links to her book can be found here.

Artwork, meditation class and other delights can be found at moonfiremagic.


Pig Farmers greyscaleReview of Pig Farmers and Prima Donnas – Tales from the Health Spa by Diane Cox, published through and available from Amazon.

Diane’s book is a series of amusing anecdotes from throughout the duration of her career as a beauty therapist. There are tales from the early days at college where she learnt (the hard way) that men are VERY different from women when it comes to massage as well as some inspiring stories about how she handled challenging experiences such as the first time she massaged an amputee, and being shouted at by angry naked men.

The stories jump about, but mostly it’s a chronological journey through a career that has seen Diane deal with people from all walks of life including, but not limited to, the aforementioned Pig Farmers and Prima Donnas. Diane writes in such a way that you feel as though you’re experiencing each tale with her; you feel her embarrassment as she tackles some truly hideous sounding wax jobs, her pain as she deals with other people’s losses and her anger as she defends herself against countless unwanted advances from male clients. The style is mostly chatty and light but where there are more sensitive subjects to tackle, Diane has a way of giving the reader just enough detail without pulling the mood down. If you’re anything like our ECHO reviewer, you’ll find yourself lost in her world of awkward encounters, enlightening experiences and woolly mammoth taming sessions.