I went to the hairdresser this morning.
Whilst I would normally dread this as a planned activity I was really looking forward to it. I have finally found a hairdresser who ‘get’s my hair and really understands what I would like(and what I really don’t) the relief in knowing that a visit to the hairdressers will be a calm, not stressful and, dare I say it, an enjoyable experience has been a long time coming. To come out of the salon not only liking your new ‘do’ but also happy in the knowledge that you won’t be spending the next 2 years growing your hair to get back to the point that you started at before you went into the salon is huge. I really mean this, it’s h-u-g-e.
Having said how much I enjoyed the outing this morning I am one who can’t seem to relax fully into the moment (I once had a massage at a swanky hotel and all the way through my mind was saying rather loudly, ‘You’ll relax in a minute, you really will…’) and I can’t seem to turn my brain off. My thoughts race especially in those moments where there is space as you wait for the next part of the haircut to begin; you know the time between arriving and meeting your hairdresser, the time between getting your hair washed and waiting for them to cut it. Those times where you can look about you and let your mind really wander.
I had a few thoughts this morning whilst having my hair done and I’ve written them out below along with the rationale (I think) of what was behind them.
Here we go…
1. Where has all the straight hair gone?
It’s interesting that fashions come and go but one thing that’s been pretty constant is people are quite complimentary about my hair. In the past I’ve had people berate their own hair as being too thin/too blonde/too short/too long and everything else in between. I have curly hair that is auburn and people often comment on the curls. SO if I have all these comments of people liking my curly hair -why do I not see many curly haired people about? I looked around the salon and of the 8 or so members of staff working not one had curly hair. I don’t believe that’s a natural phenomena surely? Of the 8 or so customers that passed through the door whilst I was there only 1 had their hair set (an older lady) with curls. In fact a young girl came in with hair very much like mine (only her’s was longer and VERY pre-raphaelite) who had it washed and blow dried straight. Why do we, as a society, not seem to like curly hair?
My brain then moved on…
2. Why was the very pretty girl wearing so much make up?
I totally understand why people wear make up. Some because it just makes them feel great. Some because they have low self-esteem and it gives them confidence and others because they just want to be noticed. I have a daughter now and although I don’t wear make up and aren’t really that girlie I am taking more of an interest in girlie things so I can have some understanding for when my girl might become girlie. I lean towards feminism but have come to understand that, for me, I am not anti-pink and girlie-ness per say I just want my girl to be who’s she wants to be rather than who she thinks she ought to be to conform in to a social stereotype that society expects. Be who you want to be is a what I say to my children be they boys or girls.
What I find difficult with this pretty girl is that she looked odd with her face covered in very thick make up. Her features weren’t highlighted but covered completely in a thick mask. This may or may not be the problem, she may be a ‘hider’ from the world – who am I to say? I don’t criticism her for being who she wants to be and I could have totally misunderstood her but there is a difference between make you wear everyday (to work) and make up that’s intended for the stage. Stage make up needs your face to be seen from a distance and shouldn’t be seen close up. I genuinely don’t intend offence and I’m not jealous of her prettiness (and youth!) don’t get me wrong I had great fun when I was younger but I can appreciate prettiness in others and this pretty girl didn’t look pretty really…
3. Asymmetric things.
Oh now this is a bug bear of mine. I like things to be straight I’ve learned and my brain (sub conscious?) always likes things to be straight rather than tilted. Last year we were staying at a B&B and on the wall of the breakfast room was lots of metal advertising signs. I like these and started looking at them more closely but they were screwed to the wall at a ‘jaunty’ angle which made me want to get out of my seat and set them straight. It’s stupid I know but there’s my brain for you. I’m the same asymmetric tops and hemlines: there is absolutely no way I’d go anywhere near them. I would find it hard not to cut it off and straighten the hem.
One of the hairdressers had asymmetrical hair. If you looked at her from the back (as I did in the reflection of my mirror) her hair slanted form the right side down towards the left. I sat there looking and wondering how on earth her brain copes with looking at it in the morning? No way I could. I felt the same when I saw Dawn french had her fringe cut sloping down and also when I saw that Doctor on Holby City (which I hardly ever watch) with her hairstyle being slanted downwards at the back. It’s stupid I know and really not that earth shatteringly important but to my brain: it hurts and it’s not something I would ever do. It’s very Phil Oakey from The Human League and I found his hair difficult even though I was only 8 so it’s a quirk of mine that started young.
4. Is it rude to say ‘I’d rather not, thanks’ to a head massage?
There is that point when you’ve had your hair washed and the conditioner has been applied and there’s time to let it soak in. I’m not sure what people did before the head massage was introduced as an option becasue it certainly wasn’t always part of getting your hair cut. I find the head massage a little awkward if I’m honest. I’m not an overtly tactile person with people I don’t know so to have someone massage my head feels a bit odd. ‘Is that pressure enough for you?’ is meant kindly I’m sure but whatever the pressure I always just seem to say ‘Yes, it’s fine…’ I even said it was fine when a hair washer washed my hair and did a massage with extremely long nails that dug into the back of my ear each time she circled my head. It hurt. Lots. But I didn’t say anything and even, which is very me, said ‘Thank you!’ as she towel dried my hair afterwards.
I don’t like being rude but I don’t like head massages and I’m not sure how to say ‘No thank you…’
5. Tipping: I never got that email telling me how you should…
I’ve worked in lots of pubs in my time and the tips were an important part of my wages. In one place the tips were so good that it doubled my wages each week so I really do understand how they can help. I know it’s polite to tip the trainee that washed your hair and also, perhaps, your hairdresser but I have no idea how or how much to give? The older I get the more I realise that there are major parts of life lessons that I somehow have just missed. I don’t understand lb’s and oz’s at all, I never got gallons and as for the whole of the subject of Science, well, lets just say the boys have now started saying ‘Is that a Daddy question?’ when they want to ask why the world is round and the sky is blue. My parents got divorced when I was 14 and from then on I was on my own when it came to things of a ‘womanly’ type. I coped with periods, worked out boys and became quite independent but there are some things that I really could have had a mother’s help for or at least someone that visited hairdresser a lot.
I can’t stop my brain thinking however much I’d really like it too. I wish there was a switch that I could flick when I just need to relax into the moment rather than bounce around thoughts. It’s quite exhausting really.
Writing really helps get those thoughts out of my head and somewhere else. The only trouble is that when I’ve written down one set of randomness it won’t be long before and new set of thoughts begin to dance around in my mind…