There is a heat wave in the region, and I feel irritable. Aircons, cold water and staying indoors are only temporary solutions. I sit in front of the TV, my mind far away, seeking some respite.
A light bulb flashes in my head, and I know just what it is that will help me combat the heat. I mutter to myself, “I need a new hair style”.
With more confidence I announce, “I am going to revamp my hair style.”
My kids merely glance at me and turn away; my husband gives me a puzzled look and goes back to the sports section in the newspaper.
Anyway now that I have a plan, I pull out my phone and search on Google for ‘hair styles for thick, wavy hair, medium length’.
Google images does not disappoint. I see hundreds of beautiful hair styles, styled to perfection. There is the casual look, the formal look, the distressed look, this look, that look and many more.
I am smiling in excitement. I narrow down to four, but my eyes keep going back to one particular hairstyle. Medium, layered, casual, chic and smart.
I imagine myself with that cut, and I immediately give myself mental airs for chic and smart.
Ok, so I save the image and call to check at the salon if they can have me. They give me a time slot.
At the appointed hour I present myself. The pampering starts soon after I am assigned a stylist. The shampoo is relaxing. Soft music plays in the background. I am asked if I want tea or coffee.
Just water, I say. The water comes with an oatmeal cracker. A few fashion and lifestyle magazines are placed before me.
Soon, I am immersed in the world of fashion, mentally trying on accessories and clothes.
After the shampoo, the stylist asks me how I would like my hair cut?
I show him the picture on my phone. He says, “This texture and the texture of your hair are very different. Your hair is very thick and this won’t suit you.” (Did I tell you that the texture of my hair actually belongs in the coconut fibre family; so rough).
I feel deflated. I ask him, “What about a shorter length with layers?”
“Hmmm”, he considers, before letting me down again, gently, “You have lovely hair; however, because it is so thick a short cut would not suit you.”
“What do you recommend?” I ask, meekly.
“Stick to the same cut, I will layer it more”, he says.
An hour later, with more layers and less hair on my head, I walk home with blow-dried hair, feeling good about the curls.
I walk home. The scene has not changed. My husband looks at me and knows that he has to say something.
The best he can do is, “Oh, they curled your hair?”
My daughter says, “No change Amma. You look the same.”
Son doesn’t look.
I tie my hair up in a knot and it’s business as usual.