“Breve”, I say , motioning with my hands.  “Si, si” is the reply.  It’s hot.  We’ve been here a week and I’ve been debating over and over in my head (and with someone else) about a short haircut.  The heat and hat in the humidity were becoming uncomfortable, especially with the hiking in Cinque Terra.  Finally, in Siena, I’ve gotten up the courage, swallowed hard, and walked into the small salon down the street.  “Trenta?”, he asks.  Hmmmmm.   “Ahhhh!”, he is saying it will be thirty minutes.  “Si” I reply and sit down on the bench.  He is working on a beautiful Italian woman with dark black hair, careful snipping and sculpting the back of her head.  I try not to stare.  I pick up a magazine for distraction.  It appears to be something similar to an Italian version of “People Magazine”.  I flip through casually, as if I can read it.  I feel like a little kid again trying to figure out what is going on by looking at the pictures and catching a bit of excitement when I recognize a word or two.  I come across a full page ad showing a muscular man, full nude frontal with white text boxes across his head, torso, and privates.  In each, from top to bottom, it says in English: “For the office”, “For the gym”, “For the bedroom”.  It’s an ad for razors ….  I put the magazine down.  The stylist is still working over the woman’s hair, lightly conversing with her.  I close my eyes for a moment, having second thoughts about this venture ….  “Senor!”  I look up.  The assistant is motioning me back to her station.  “Shampoo” she says.  I feel a bit silly having to do this.  They’re just going to cut it off anyway, but I don’t know how to protest and follow her to the back.  The water feels cool on my head and the massage is relaxing.  Soon she is done and I am moved to a cutting station.  Next to me, the stylist is finishing up the woman.  I wait as the assistant places scissors, and clippers on the table in front of my chair.  The woman stands and inspects her hair with a hand mirror.  She looks happy.  There is a flurry of chatter between them, then she places some money by his register and leaves.  My stomach tightens.  What am I doing!?  If I were at home, I’d probably chicken out now and tell him “Just trim it up a little”, but here, I wouldn’t know how.  I try to look calm, like I do this all the time.  He speaks a little English: “Short?”  “Yes” I say, making it sound confident.  He starts on the side with the clippers …”Bzzzzzzzzt”.  A big clump of hair slips to the floor.  “Ok?” he asks.  I run my fingers across the cut spot.  “Ummmmm, ok”  I reply.   “Ok, I can make shorter, but not longer” he jokes.  “Si, si” I say, smiling.   He runs the clippers over the rest of my head.  My heart sinks as I watch in the mirror.  It will grow back, I keep telling myself.  He is quickly done.  Then, out come the scissors.  “Snip”, “Snip” “Snip”.  He works quickly around my head, trimming up stray bits.  A bit of a shave on the neck, then the mirror is handed to me.  The face staring back looks strange.  I can’t believe I did this!  Oh well, too late now.  Wonder what Beth will think.  “Clean up now”, he says, pointing to his assistant.  I follow her back to the washing station and she shampoos my head again. When she’s done, I get up and go to the front by the register.  He writes down the bill and I pay with a tip.  “Grazia” he replies.  I walk back to the hotel.  The sun feels hot, and the breeze cool, on my scalp.  It is a strange sensation. 

Back in the room, Beth is very reassuring.  “It looks fine.”  “You’re just not used to it.”  I try to believe her.  It does feel cooler.  I’ve gotten more used to it now, and it’s already grown quite quickly.  Something to remember, I guess.  At least I got to have an Italian woman rub my head … twice ! :- )



07/18/2010 09:16

I think you’re turning Italian – very stylish. And very easy maintenance! If you’re going for a style change, who better to guide you than an Italian? I think next you all should go clothes shopping.

07/18/2010 09:52

What a BRAVE guy!
Now go get a Gellatto!
You might even like it in North Idyho!
Easier for Wendy to slurp!

07/18/2010 13:46

Don't know about the clothes. I tried a "popped" collar, but got a disapproving look from someone :-) Hope all is going well for everyone there. We move on to Bologna tomorrow, a much bigger city. Not sure what to expect....


Proc Freq
07/19/2010 08:38

Had to look at the pic on a comp screen vs. my tiny phone. HOT italiano man!!! Beth better not stray too far from her man's side. Cool shades too. When did those debut?

07/19/2010 13:58

Sorry, Jess. I tried to carry you with us in spirit with the NOLA hat, but black on the head in this heat ... Once I lost the hat, I needed more coverage on the eyes. They aren't prescription, but they only cost a few Euros from the cheapo souvenir vendor by the piazza. Need lots of sunscreen on top too! :-)

07/19/2010 19:41

Hey! I finally figured out who that monk with Beth is::
Brother William the tall from Wendyshill!

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