This is a picture of Mr Noi. We discovered him on our last visit to Koh Samui and what this guy does not know about back problems and how to massage them back to good health is not worth knowing.
He had a piece written about him in The Nation about four years ago. He was rendered almost blind by illness as a teenager, but far from being disheartened by it Noi has been kneading the tension out of tourists muscles for many many years. You can always find him in the same place beneath a shady tree outside the Imperial Boathouse Hotel on Koh Samuis Choeng Mon Beach.
By coincidence (well perhaps not) this is where we are staying and Mr Noi will be working his magic on my back for which i will be very grateful.
Noi says he learned the secrets of the craft from other locals who ply the sands offering visitors an invigorating rub. He learned how to search out the aches, stretch stiff limbs and press just the right points on the body with his strong fingers and palms. Now in his late 30s, Noi considers this the ideal job. He gets to meet new people all the time (his remaining eyesight allows him to remember faces much of the time) and help customers escape the stress of their rigours back home.