I float in ten inches of warm water. It is completely dark and soundless. Five minutes could have passed, or forty-five. It's impossible to tell. This could be a really crazy idea, or the best one ever.
Earlier, I walked warily into the float center. Some places in the town where I live have an air of what I'll call "entitled hippie with a trust fund." Luckily, the emo factor was low.
This is the pod you get into. It is filled with hundreds of pounds of Epsom salt (the kind they use is pharmaceutical grade magnesium sulfate). This allows you to float on the surface.
First, you have to take a shower. I'd like to have this shower in my house!
When you close the door of the pod, you're left alone with your thoughts. Trying to relax was harder than I thought. Instead of thinking about zen things, my mind wandered. I wonder what time it is. It's really dark in here. What should I have for dinner? Ow, I got salt water in my eye. Stop moving around!
But eventually, you have to relax, sort of. There's nothing else to do. You effortlessly float, weightless. Some people fall asleep. When the lights come on in the pod, you know you're done.
Supposedly, flotation therapy has a lot of benefits, from pain relief to lessening anxiety and helping with a number of health ailments. As a person who loves hot springs, has a hot tub, and has trouble truly relaxing, I figured it couldn't be a bad thing.
I didn't come up with any major revelations from an hour in the pod. But I did feel calm. I drove by the gym without feeling like I should be exercising. After the darkness, colors looked brighter.
If you have a flotation center near you, try it! It's really kind of strange, but sort of magic too.