Thursday, June 9, 2011
My adventure this week was getting a haircut at a place where they were supposed to have someone who speaks English. Only enough English to tell me I could get a shampoo and cut for 58 yuan ($9).
A young girl sat me in a chair and draped me with a plastic robe and tucked in towels around my neck. She brushed out my hair, then took the back of the brush and whacked the back of my shoulders! Next as I sat there, she shampooed my hair!! She took a handful of shampoo and worked it into my hair as she drizzled water on it. After a bit, she had enough lather to use two hands to rub the shampoo all over my scalp. Did a thorough job, then kind of squeejeed the lather off my hair and dumped it into a trash can. I was led to the back to sit at the conventional hairdresser's sink to have my hair rinsed, along with a deep scalp massage and pulling along my neck. My wet hair was put up in a towel with some fancy folding.
Back at the chair, I wrongly assumed she was going to cut my hair, so I showed her the drawing I made as to how my hair is usually done (I have to do this in the U.S., too!). She laughed and indicated I was to show that to someone else. She continued to work on me, first cleaning my ears with a Q-tip. She did a deep massage to my neck and shoulders, followed by some pounding and stretching of my arms and hands, including cracking a few knuckles! She held my hand and shook out my arm, then pulled it way behind my head. Not done yet, she pounded on my back and spine.
Finally I was led to the other side, for the hair cut. The hairdressers appeared to be mostly men, carrying their black cases of the tools of their trade. Mine did not speak English, but seemed okay with my drawing and limited Chinese, and set to work. When I said no to blow-drying, he brought over a girl who spoke some English, to at least get that message. So even though I said I was finished, the guy meticulously checked lengths and snipped off loose ends. He used a straight razor to shave the hairline clean. After at least an hour, I was let go to pay my $9!
Thursday, November 10, 2011
Time for another haircut. Went to the same place, but it had a new name. I was early, and a young man took me to the back of the shop for the shampoo and conditioning at the sinks, rather than at the chairs as last time. I was given a choice of three prices: 58, 158, or 258. I chose the cheapest. After the shampoo, I was given over to the hairdresser. This guy interpreted my drawing differently, not as in how to cut my hair, but as the final result. Which meant he straightened my hair as he did the blow-drying. I accepted the blow drying this time to "get my money's worth!" He also did a lot of thinning with the shears, so I don't know how puffy I'll end up. Oh, well, can't complain for $9!