I had forgotten the sheer pleasure of getting hair washed in the parlour.
Being pukka middle-class Indian, I only pay for things which I can’t do at home. It means I am willing to pay a small fortune for wood baked Pizzas but not Pasta- because we like the one I make at home more than anything outside.
In palourlance, this means I pay for my twice a yearly haircut, once in 3 years straightening, an occasional foot massage and monthly body massage. Thats it. I have trained ( read bullied) husband into giving the most fantastic head massage this side of town. I have always thought manicure and pedicure absolute waste of money and time – since I bite nails and my feet never manage to stay clean for more than a day. I don’t do eyebrows and facials. My teenage experience of waxing was so horrific ( I have a gore-torture scene in mind for the Hostel franchise in which they wax a man’s body using hot hot wax and peel the skin off with strips) that I have resorted to shaving. Other fancy treatments that the parlour people bully us into looking at? forget it.
This time I decided to get a hot oil massage from my neighbourhood parlour since a wrist injury prevented husband from rendering the services. It was mind-glowingly good and there is really no comparison no matter how much I love my husband. A phone call summoning me to a Skype meeting in couple of hours disturbed the massage. It meant that I couldn’t keep the oil overnight. In a fit on panic, I decided to get my hair washed in the parlour post massage.
Aaaahh… and what a heavenly experience it is. Like the most simple meals that pleasure us in the most soulful manner. Like the pungent smell of Pears soap in chilly winters. Like the slightly salty smell of husband. Like the soft weight of dog on my lap.
I think it was in Letters to Juliet that Vanessa Redgrave says that there is nothing more satisfying than getting your hair brushed by someone. Well, getting your hair washed by someone trumps it. The feeling of strong fingers stroking the scalp as hot water cascades down in the sink and smell of professional shampoo intoxicates you and the gentle hands that remove the foam and squeeze water from hair and the dryer putting one further to sleep- I was curled in the chair by the end of it in sheer sensuous bliss.
It is a gift of the dog that I have learnt to enjoy even smallest of things. It happened when your day is spent with someone who thinks going out for a walk even for the tenth time is the superestest thing ever. Well, except scratching, and playing and cuddling and sleeping in sun and digging and barking at enemies and sniffing, well you get the idea.
I am pukka going to get this blissful thing at least once a month.