(Note: My sister sent this story about getting her hair cut in Morocco.)
Simple you may say...go in, sit down, cut hair, voila.
I was given a gift certificate to the fancy salon in Rabat and really really needed a haircut, so I managed to make an appointment for 11:00.
I showed up at 11:00, this was a mistake.
While my name clearly was written in the slot that said 11:00, the women were so perplexed by my promptness that they ran off in all directions looking for the owner, Romaine. Romaine has the look typical of stylists in Rabat, think Luke from General Hospital, circa 1980. Oh, la la.
Romaine is "simply enchanted" by my blonde hair and green eyes and is "thrilled to have the opportunity" to cut my tangled, salt water, windblown mess. If I will just be patient he will return--After cutting all the people who are now showing up for their 9:30, 10:00 and 10:30 appointments. (there has to be some kind of cultural cue that I am missing here)
So I sit. oh and I sit. Some cafe', a french fashion magazine. More sitting.
Then it is time for the cutting of the hair. I tell him what I want, he says that would be nice, however he has a better idea for me. (don't worry, he didn't butcher me). I am just ready to go home and write the paper that is due (notice that I am not writing this paper right now..) so I submit to his will...just get me out of this place. (the fancy salon in Rabat by the way--think some of the more superior salons in the US, like the hair cuttery or super cuts)
He hangs me upside-down and chops away. fffwwit ffwitt fwitt, chip chop the hair flies. I can hear the women laughing as they walk by me...I am afraid. In the end It is a wonderful haircut, achieved entirely while I was hanging upside-down, simply amazing.
I know it is a remarkable haircut because on the way home a handsome young Moroccan man nearly died to tell me how beautiful I was. He was biking through the traffic circle on "Natural Selection Ave." and after one look at my haircut stopped in front of my car and made the "wow, did Romaine cut your hair? That is fabulous, please let my buy you a camel" face and kissy lips. Unfortunately I have a rule about stopping in the middle of the most dangerous traffic circle, on the most dangerous street in Rabat to exchange phone numbers. So I did what I always do, I smiled and --sped up-- but did not run him over as I could have. The near-death by a girl-with-an-amazing-haircut-experience was thrilling for him, I am sure.
OK, back to work for me...I had a wonderful time in the US, Made some fantastic friends that I am so happy will be sharing late-night chats with me for the next two years, and am now glad to be back in Morocco.
I will post more soon.