Share this #HOTGR blog post

Quintus Carruthers - Married to a Thai masseuse

During a road trip through the Garden Route, one of our journalists found a small Thai massage place on Main Street in Plettenberg Bay called Thai Massage Healing Hands” Walking into Healing Hands, one is instantly taken aback by the amazing view of the ocean and the warmness of the owners, Quintus and PiNong. Here, Quintus talks about how he learned about Thai massage, how he met his wife from Thailand and his life in Plett.

“My name is Quintus Carruthers and my wife’s name is PiNong. We met in Johannesburg about eight years ago. Six months later, we got married. We lived together in Johannesburg for four and a half years. She came out to South Africa to do Thai massage.

“Usually the girls stay where they work, but since we got married and she was living with me, she didn’t have the benefit of her coworkers, the other girls being able to give her a massage at the end of the day, so she kind of trained me up so I can help her out if she had a sore shoulder or sore back. So basically, that’s how I started to get my training and after living together for about four and a half years in Johannesburg, we packed up and moved to Thailand, hoping to stay there forever.

“That didn’t quite work out, so we decided to come back to South Africa. She couldn’t come back immediately at the same time I did because her South African visa was due to expire within five weeks. So, she would have needed to submit a new application for the renewal of a visa within five weeks and she would’ve needed to submit bank statements for three months and police clearance. There wouldn’t be enough time for that, so she remained in Thailand.

quintis carruthers garden route 1
quintis carruthers garden route 4

"We basically walked out of everything that we had and just left it all behind. And now coming back, we weren't bound to anywhere specific so I thought this would be an opportunity to go to live on the coast.”

“Then, I came out here, having no idea what I’m going to do. I did not want to go back to Johannesburg. I’ve been living there thirty-five years and always wanted to move to the coast, and it just never materialised. There were just too many obstacles. The whole thing just seemed too big an undertaking.

“We basically walked out of everything that we had and just left it all behind. And now coming back, we weren’t bound to anywhere specific so I thought this would be an opportunity to go to live on the coast. So, after a lot of thinking and scratching my ear and wondering on a whole bunch of different options, I chose Plett.

“I must tell you: one day, when I was in Kenya, I was taking a shower and I felt a message come to me from the Great Beyond: ‘When you are in Plett, you must do Thai massage”

“My wife is from Isan. Isan people live in the east of Thailand, about three hours east of Bangkok. PiNong has been doing Thai massage for twenty-five years and I’ve been trained for about seven years now. We’ve had the shop here in Plett for three and a half years and it’s going good. And it’s getting better all the time. It’s been tough getting established. It takes a bit of time adjusting and getting settled in a new town, especially a small town.”

“I think we’re adjusting well, it seems never-ending. We were told there’s a two year probation period in this town and I don’t know what happens after two years. It’s been three years now and nothing has changed. We heard that it’s actually a four-year probation, so maybe the whales will do a tail dance across the bay after four years. Who knows.”

Related Posts

Deidre Christofoli - The Gypsy

Deidre Christofoli - The Gypsy

Gipsy heritage on Route 62. “I don’t really know where this interest in collectables came from. I can show you a picture of the shop my father owned in the Free State. My mother was a Romany gipsy and I think that tinker-tailor characteristic kind of carried over, it’s in our blood. There was a circus troupe that came over from Italy, and at birth, she was dumped by these gipsies. Some guy found her in a bin and handed her over to the social welfare worker, who was my gran."
Cynthia Joubert - The Seamstress

Cynthia Joubert - The Seamstress

Golden thread through Friemersheim. “Now, I always ask, why did the Lord - now that I’m older, because I’m already turning 63 - why did He make the work come in now? But I guess He had a time for everything. I had to have quieter times, and I had to learn a lot to get to where I am. But age is only a number.”
Aharon Baruch - The Israeli Barista

Aharon Baruch - The Israeli Barista

A coffee shop is not a petrol station. “My passion for roasting came in 1998. South Africa didn’t have good coffee that time, it was very bad. The industry was very, very unknown, coffee. And I start inquiring about roasting, I get airbed fluid roaster - it looks like a petrol pump - and I roast coffee for the coffee shop. So, people start liking it and in 2002 someone come and bought my coffee shop."