Do you find that, when you’re really not looking forward to something, you have a mental process which allows you to pull up your big girl (or boy) panties and just get out there and do it? It’s the mental equivalent of a kick up the arse. It could involve deep breathing or visualizing a positive rather than negative experience, a quick shot of vodka, who knows, it’s different for everyone.
Well that was me yesterday morning before I set off for the
chamber of psychological torture hairdressers. If you read my post from yesterday (a big thank you if you did by the way) you’ll know that this is not exactly a pleasurable experience for me. If you can imagine how it would feel to have Torquemada turning up on your porch and telling you he’d like a quick chat……it’s a bit like that.
Anyway, loins suitably girded, I set off. The salon is in a hotel in Monaco so the first job was finding it (never an easy task for me); luckily a very nice chap offered to show me the way :O) He left me at the lift and said
“It’s the first door on your left”
“The other left Madam”
So I entered the salon slightly flushed and silently cursing my ability to differentiate my left from my right when I’m stressed. Thankfully, despite being 10 minutes early, I did not have to wait so there was no temptation to bury my nose in glossy hair magazines which would give me unrealistic expectations as to what could actually be achieved during my visit.
I popped my arms into a
straight jacket gown and was then deposited, with a bottle of chilled Evian (nice touch) in front of a…..WTF!!!!! Not your usual head and shoulders sized mirror, oh no, this was a full floor to ceiling, show every flaw in every part of your body and make you seriously question why you chose to wear those pink shorts mirror. Mwiffle!
Next shock was the arrival of a man.
“Hi! I’m going to be looking after you today”
What? A bloke was going to be doing my hair????”
“Um right, ok, great thanks. I should tell you, I’m English and my French really isn’t very good” (I said in French – don’t be impressed, it’s a well practiced line)
“Don’t worry Madam I speak almost no English”
I think he thought that this would make me feel better. It didn’t.
“Some words in French that I did not understand“
“I’m sorry I don’t understand” (very useful phrase learned very early on!)
After several minutes of rephrasing and Gallic gesticulations I worked out that he was asking me how my hair had been blonded at my last hairdressers
“No idea really, she just sort of painted some stuff on my hair and voila!”
He gave me the sort of look usually reserved for young children trying to shove peas up their nose and launched into an explanation of the countless options that were available to me.
“Look, I really think it would be best if I just left it to you, you’re the expert after all. However I think I should tell you that I hate my hair and I always hope that hairdressers will perform miracles with it”
At this point I expected him to pale slightly and mutter something about doing his best as had always happened in the past but he didn’t..
“And what would the miracle look like?”
Oh shit! How do I answer that?
“Um, I’m not really sure to be honest…”
I went back to being the pea stuffing toddler.
Anyway, except for a brief discussion about the football (brief because I have no interest in and know nothing about football) and the weather (well, I am English), I let him get on with things.
My hair was painted (30 minutes in front of the mirror trying to avoid eye contact with my reflection), rinsed, painted again (further 45 minutes trying to understand articles in Marie Claire – French version), rinsed, conditioned and rinsed again.
Finally I was ready for THE CUT.
There was no discussion. I think he’d realised that it was futile by this point so he set about doing terribly creative things with several different pairs of scissors. However, he did tell me that he’d spent 15 years working in a salon in Paris, the style capital of the World. I was somewhat comforted by this revelation but still found myself gripping the arms of the chair very hard; I think you could probably see the nail marks if you looked hard enough.
He finished cutting, ignored the rising panic in my eyes and armed himself with a small tub of some blue goo and a hairdryer. 10 minutes later and he was done.
“You can open your eyes now Madame”
“Open your eyes”
I did. One at a time. Slowly.
“Wow! It looks great” Big smile of relief….and that was just from him!
So, there you have it, all that worrying and loin girding and for what? Honestly why do I make such a fuss about these stupid little things?
“So with the hair serum (what, it smelt nice!) that will be an astronomical amount of Euros”
Resigning myself to living on baguettes and cheese for the next couple of weeks I handed over my card and made another appointment for 6 weeks time. I sincerely hope that I will remember this experience and have no need to gird my loins in the future……….I probably won’t.
Oh yes, I knew there was something else. I saw my best friend later in the day; I opened the door to him grinning proudly, his comment:
“I thought you said you were going to the hairdressers today” Men!
Please do let me know about the last time you needed to do a spot of loin girding, I’d love to hear from you.