Sunday, October 12, 2008

The Haircut 10/10/08

The Haircut 

Weather Report:
Calm winds, clear, visibility unlimited

From the picture at right you can see that I really needed a hair cut and this was taken 10 days ago. Saturday, I finally got a chance to get it cut and tried out another barber. Actually, the first one was a Salon. That gave them an excuse to charge me $30 for a haircut. It was a pleasant experience (she washed my hair and massaged my head) but it was not what I really needed.

The missionaries told me about another spot they use and Elder Worthen accompanied me Saturday to explain what I wanted; at least that was the plan.

When we arrived, we were met at the door by the cashier who was dressed in black, very tight jeans and a sweatshirt that said "Smile and I'm Yours" in English. First clue. She directed me to a chair and a late 20's lady who I later learned was named Eleana. My escort stood in the doorway, seeming not to know what to do. I said, "Tell her not to cut it too short. I want to look about the same." He didn't say a word as she put the drape around me and the tissue around my neck. As she picked up the clippers I again said, "Tell her what I want." Before he could compose himself, she had put a #3 guide on her clippers and began to shave off the hair all around the sides of my head like I have seen in movies about Army recruits at boot camp.

It was too late. The die was cast. She finally turned to him, still standing in the doorway, and said that he could sit in the chair near the entry door. Since he didn't move, I think he was too intimidated but he translated her comments for me. She finally said, "He's not a child. You can sit over there." I told him to tell her that he was a missionary and had to stay where I could see him. He said something and she smiled, but I don't think she understood.

As she worked her way around my head, around and around and around, my hair kept getting shorter and shorter. She was not as gentle as the Salon lady, but I guess that came with the higher price. When she wanted my head tilted, she grabbed my head and turned much like my chiropractor and if I moved she put it back where she wanted. There was no disputing who was in charge here. I couldn't say anything to her and my "Interpreter" was mute so it was what it was and I just decided to endure.

As it turned out, the hair cut cost $10 but I didn't get a shampoo or a massage. Elder Worthen said that they would have shampooed my hair for another 30 roubles ($1.25), but I never had a chance to ask for it. Maybe next time.

Here I am now, looking like a cross between an army recruit and Jimmie Durante. Oh well, the Cabo/California hair is all gone now and what looks like blond is really white fading to gray. Cindy is pleased with the color (it looks more like hers), but thinks it's is a bit short. She says the best thing about my looks is my hair and it's gone. Another gentle woman in my life.

I am told that Russian women are aggressive and strong. If this beautician was any example, I am a believer. She was definitely in charge and I was the sheep being shorn. This country is full of surprises and contradictions. I read about the dominant males and abused women and then meet a lady like this one with strong hands and an iron will. I did get her to smile when I asked in Russian, "Kag vas zavoot", what is your name. For just a moment she softened, looked down, smiled, and said, "Eleana", but immediately got back in control and shook my hand as if to say, OK, who's next?

What a country.


Trisha said...

Not too bad. But I do miss the golden locks. Maybe when you sit in the Cabo Room for a long time they will come back.

Nancy Farrimond said...

Hello Elder & Sister Simmons,

I finally got myself signed onto
the blog. I didn't know how to do
it at first, but I learned how and
I did it.

I'm really enjoying reading about
your missionary experinces there in
Russia. It's exiting to know your
doing the Lord's work. It's

You are very special people and are
both in my prayers. Keep up the "GREAT" work.