Seeing as though I’ve got into the habit of tediously blogging about my haircuts, (August 28, 2010, February 22, 2011 , June 5, 2011), I will continue. I went back to the place that I went to in June, a place called Paris Merinne, a couple of streets away from my apartment. I liked it last time, good haircut, and they have this massage-y thing that is enjoyable.
Going in there, with bad Spanish comprehension, is a little overwhelming. The barber jumped up, ushered me to a chair. Another guy — not wearing a white barber coat, but with a hare lip — took my hooded sweatshirt and cap. A middle-aged lady in a white coat asked me if I wanted a drink, “café, aqua, refrescos, whisky, brandy, cerveza.” No gracias. The guy who took my cap and sweatshirt came back with the pile of magazine. No gracias. And the middle-aged woman returned, asking if I wanted a manicure or pedicure. No gracias. That was a lie, though. I did want a manicure. Not sure why I said no. Sometimes I do that kind of stuff, though. There are two coffee shops in my neighbourhood that I’ve yet to go into even though I really want to. One of them, the coffee smells really good; the other just looks nice inside. But I’ve still not been in to either. Something in my brain happens, and I find myself over-thinking it, and just walking by to, inevitably, and somewhat depressingly, just going to Starbucks.
I mumbled in Spanish what I wanted, showed the barber a photo of what his colleague did last time, and he got to work. I looked at my nails. Quite close, cos I didn’t have my specs on, and was about to ask the guy if I could change my mind, and actually get a manicure, when he asked if I wanted one. Si, señor.
He nipped off into the back room for a moment, and a younger white-coated woman came out and asked to confirm that I wanted a manicure. Si, por favor. she nipped back off to get her toolkit, and the middle-aged white-coated woman came back and asked if I wanted a manicure. Oops, I think toes were stepped on by the change of mind and, through no real fault of my own, choosing the younger, prettier manicurist.
I’ve only had one manicure before, which was also in Mexico, when I was on vacation here in 2005; my then-girlfriend was having hers done, so I figured I’d get mine done too. That was in a mall in Tuxtla Gutierrez, Chiapas. And it was painful. My nails hurt for the next couple of days. But this time, it was lovely. Really relaxing. She smiled a lot too, which was nice. And at the end of each hand, you put some cream on my hands and gave my hand a good vigourous rubbing. It was especially nice when she interlocked her fingers with mine and gave them a good creamy rub.
There is something weird about have the dead parts of your body simultaneously chopped off. Although I wasn’t having a pedicure which would complete the clearing away of the dead. Next time, I will try to refrain from picking my toenails (a truly horrible habit of mine is picking at my toenails. I’ve done it ever since I was a kid. They look like talons most of the time.) And then I can be like the man on their business card:
(I love that the guy using his laptop whilst getting a shoe shine is staring at nothing on his screen. It’s either nothing, or one of Brian Eno’s new generative music apps.)
I am rather proud of my new nails. No longer are the edges like the coastline of Iceland, no longer are they all ridge-y like an aerial photo of a glacier; they are smooth and shiny and lovely.