It happened, as most enlightenments do, out in the desert. I ended up getting upgraded to a private bungalow at a fancy hotel in Palm Springs and one of the amenities was an outdoor bathtub. I hadn’t taken a bath in years. Who has the time? I was a shower person—in and out and I was set. But there, in that tranquil environment, with some free time before bed, I thought it might feel nice to be naked outside for a while. I filled up that big old tub with hot water, stirred in the accompanying mineral salts, tossed off my fluffy white robe and sunk in. I inhaled a deep breath of menthol-scented steam, looked up at a dark sky dotted with stars and, in that moment, came to appreciate the restorative powers of a good bath.
And even though my tub at home isn’t quite as big or as luxe or as outdoors as that one at the hotel, it still works pretty damn well. So at the end of a particularly rough day, I’ll put on some good music and soak. I’m not going to go into statistics or studies about lactic acid, osmosis or lower blood pressure. It’s not rocket science. Here’s why you want to take a bath: In the solitude of your bathroom, surrounded by warm water, you can’t help but relax and let your mind wander. The steam will open up your sinuses and loosen your muscles. You’ll get a better night’s sleep, wake refreshed and your skin will look better. In short, it’s an easy, effective and cheap way to improve your life. Who can argue with that? Not even those impatient shower people.