About this series: This story is part of an ongoing project by the Union-Bulletin to shine a spotlight on businesses along Isaacs Avenue while the road is being rebuilt from Division Street to Wilbur Avenue over the next two years. Pick up next Monday’s U-B for the latest installment.
Eva’s Chinese Massage, at 1430 Isaacs Ave., is owned and operated by Xiuzhen Shi, who says she goes by Eva because, “It is much easier to say.”
She grew up farming in Taizhou, China, which is along the coast of the East China Sea about 150 miles from the provincial capital and industrial center of Hangzhou.
Eva’s is open every day from 9 a.m.-8 p.m. and can be reached for appointments at 540-5923. Eva notes walk-ins are welcome, too.
Q: How did you come to live and work in Walla Walla?
A: I came to Walla Walla because a friend told me it is a nice town to start a business in. It is a safe place to live. I have been a massage therapist for about seven years. I have been on Isaacs Avenue for about nine months now. Before that, I started in Walla Walla in the Eastgate business plaza. But it was an upstairs office, and a lot of people could not get to me.
Q: What led you to choose massage as a profession?
A: I was working in home health care. But I am too small to pick up the large, elderly people bound to wheelchairs. But I love to help people and make them feel better, so I learned massage.
I have gone to three different massage schools. Two in California and one here in Washington. The first one was for my California massage license. The second was for more hours to get my Nebraska massage license. And the third I needed to spend more time in school for my Washington massage license.
Q: What is your favorite part of your job?
A: My favorite part about massage is when the client walks out much happier and healthier then when they came in. The main thing I wish people knew is we are here to help. We are professional and have the same guidelines as doctors as far as morals and conduct is concerned.
Q: How do you see the construction project on Isaacs affecting your business?
A: The construction while it is happening of course will slow my business down because people cannot easily get to my shop. After it is completed, I believe it may help because it will be easier to get back onto the road from my parking lot.
Q: What are your aspirations for your business?
A: My dream for my massage parlor is for me to get so many happy clients I have to hire two helpers to keep up with them. I take extreme pride in my work and making people’s pain go away. I work 11 hours a day so do not have much time for myself except between clients. But the clients are why I am here.
Q: Do you have any hobbies?
A: I like flowers and gardening, but work is my main hobby. I love to make people’s pain go away. I like to see the smiles on my customers’ faces as they leave my shop.
Paul Werner of Walla Walla assisted with translation of this Q&A.