Years ago I used to have a weekly appointment at the local beauty shop. Yes men, I have to admit I had my hair done each week, usually on Tuesday nights. I had been doing this for several months, until my beautician decided that doing hair was no longer her thing.
The shop was a one woman shop and very private. Only my wife and daughter knew about the shop. The prices never remained stable. I never knew from week to week what I would be charged. When I started visiting the shop the lady charged me 60 90. The next week she wanted to charge me 60 40 90. One time she wanted tennie fifty and a couple of times she had actually tried to give me money when I had no change due me. I still remember the last time I went to her shop I asked her how much it cost to get my hair done and she said "only said six dollars!" Wow, talk about inflation! I gladly paid the six dollars and settled in for a nice relaxing hair do.
The shop was located in my own home so all I had to wear is an old t shirt and a pair of cut offs or boxers. The place was extremely casual.
The reason my hairdresser quit the business is cause she has grown up on me. She is now at an age when she is no longer a little girl but a young woman.
My hairdresser's mode of operation was very unusual. I was never able to sit in a chair to have my hair done. I always had to bend over in some form or fashion for her to reach my hair because she was not tall enough to reach the back of a normal chair. Sometimes, in order to get my hair done, I had to place one towel or pad on the hard floor for my knees and another towel on the edge of a coffee table to rest my arms and chin on. I would hold my head over the edge of the table while my hairdresser did her wonderful work.
Sometimes my head was down over the edge of the tub while she wetted it down with a squeaky toy fish. As she held the toy in the water she would press all the air out of it. She claims the fish tooted. Then she would release her grip on the fish and allow the squeaky toy fish take in water that she then squirts it on my head again. Never mind the water may be a week old and stale and stagnant. She was happy, so I was happy.
My hair was patted down with a wet washrag and the soaping process began. First a bar of soap, then a squirt of liquid soap. More bar soap and more liquid soap. "Oh look there's some cold cream, lets apply some of that!" "Oh there's another kind of liquid soap! Let's put some of that on too!" More bar soap, more liquid soap, a mixture of bubble bath soap and soon she had me lathered from the top of my head to the middle of my back. My shirt would be soaked and all the while I'm resting my head on the tub and enjoying the talented hands at work. I'm very much like an old dog. You scratch my head and I will stay still for a long time. She was happy, so I was happy.
After the soaping process comes the combing process. Her method was somewhat rough during this time. I have, on occasion, thought I felt the teeth of the comb breaking off in my scalp. More than once I have thought I felt a warming sensation of blood running from my head, but it never happened. An occasional knock or lump on my head from a waylaid brush has also occurred. I would sit very still allowing her to create this hairdo for me. I would never complain. She was happy, so I was happy.
Once the combing is complete then the styling begins. Parting my hair in various ways she combs and combs, scrubs and scrubs, combs and rubs my hair until she finally announces, "I'm done!"
By now my knees are hurting and my shoulder blades are burning from being bent over the tub for so long but that's OK with me. The water that started out being warm on my hair is now almost ice cold. She was happy, so I was happy.
As I stand up to leave, my wife, who has been nearby, has to grab a camera to take a picture of my new style. Never mind I had a mass of soap running down my face and my back is soaking wet, I am still happy. Never mind I can't let her see me wash the stuff from my hair. Never mind we used a half a bottle of shampoo and most of the bubble bath. She's happy, so I'm happy.
She smiles at me and she runs and jumps in my lap. She snuggles into my chest and I can smell the fresh aroma of baby powder. We spend a few moments together in each others arms in silence. Finally she breaks the moment with a request that I get on the floor and play puppy.
Unfortunately, these days are over. The hairdressing days are over and my former hairdresser is now becoming my chief. Whatever she does in life, this Pawpaw will support her.
If she's happy, I'm happy.