It’s only hair, right?? : The tale of my French haircut

Those who know me well know that I absolutely hate getting my hair cut. In fact, I’ve avoided getting my hair cut for the last 15 months (Yup, I haven’t cut my hair since November 2009!). I have a genuine haircut phobia – no, I don’t scream and break down in a panic at the sight of a salon chair or scissors. Rather, it’s the reaction of the hairdresser as she handles my beastly Italian-Portuguese mane that gets me in a panic! My hair was in dire need of a cut and for the past few weeks I avoided getting my hair cut by snipping off all my split ends with a pair of everyday scissors. Sooner or later I knew I would have to eventually seek professional help. Today I finally worked up the courage to get my hair cut. I had even done my homework prior to this very momentous day: I asked my students for salon recommendations (most were out of my monthly language assistant’s salary price range, or I just couldn’t locate the salon in town), I researched terms and phrases on the internet, browsed the English Assistants in France online forum, cut out pictures from magazines, and even spent one Saturday walking around town investigating my options. It finally all came down to a visit to Art et Coiffure. The verdict: It’s okay – it’s definitely not the best (I think one side is a little longer) and it’s definitely not the worst (that award goes to my mushroom haircut at age 4; thanks Mom!). Here’s how it all went down. I walked into the salon and explained my situation to the receptionist/hair washer. The hairdresser was with a client, and I was told it would be a 30 minute wait. I turned to take a seat, but before I could sit down, the receptionist took my coat and offered me something to drink (now that’s service!). I flipped through the magazines until the hairdresser was ready for me. After she welcomed me, I explained to her how French is not my first language and she told me not to worry. I sat down and we discussed hairstyle options. The receptionist/hair washer then took me over to the washbasin to wash my hair. She made sure I was sitting comfortably in the chair, asked if the water temperature was okay, and was very gentle with my hair. At the end, she asked me if I wanted “soin” (hair treatment); I had read on the forum that it can cost up to 6€ extra so I opted not to take the treatment. Next, I moved back to the chair and I waited for the hairdresser to make the first cut. We made small talk while she cut my hair, she complimented me on my French, and told me I have beautiful hair (I beg to differ! ha 🙂  ) . Last step, the “brushing” or the blow-dry. She made some final touch-ups and I was done – 35 € and 12 centimetres later… Before heading out, she helped me put on my jacket (more service!), wished me luck and for me to enjoy the rest of my stay in Mâcon. Overall, I had an enjoyable experience, and I’m glad I finally got around to cutting my hair; the positives definitely outweigh the negatives: my split ends are gone, and my hair feels lighter and healthier. Even if it had turned out horribly, it is only hair and would eventually grow out. Besides, I’d probably wait another 15 months to get it cut again anyway! 😉

amanda

p.s. I think any self-portrait taken in front of a mirror is tacky, so you’ll just have to wait to see my new ‘do. Unless of course you are my parents, in that case, you’ll just have to wait for our next Skype date! 🙂

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