I met a nice woman at the grocery store. I've been asking people with hair like Yordanos' where they get their hair cut, and this lady had her daughter with her, and she had nice hair. Anyway, I asked who did her daughter's hair and hooray! She cuts hair. So we scheduled for a Friday afternoon for a hair cut. It would be Y's 1st cut here. (She wants to grow it out, so we just let it grow, AND I couldn't find a local place that did hair like hers.)
Jeanine, the beautician, took one look at her hair and said, "Oh, we'll have to straighten it first to cut it. Otherwise you can't tell what shape you're making." I realized that none of us would have time for that so we scheduled for a few days away.
In the car, I asked Y if she understood what Jeanine had said and why we couldn't get her hair cut today. "NO! You said she knew how to cut my hair! Why she not cut my hair?! You not tell the truth!" I had to assure and reassure Y that Yes, Jeanine DOES know how to cut your hair, but she has never SEEN your hair before, so she couldn't know that it needed to be straightened until she saw it. There was lots of harumphing from the backseat, and mumbling of "You not tell the truth." (I get that a lot, but in my defense, it is not my practice to lie to my children.)
I learned a lot on Tuesday. I had NO idea how complex it is to do "black" hair. In the end, it took 5 hours. (Thankfully, Habtamu was at a friend's house... from 9 to 4, as it turned out... thank you, Katherine!) 5 hours is apparently not a big deal for the regulars. Some ladies had brought sack lunches! We ended up having lunch at 3, before going to Beauty City to buy new combs and silk scarves for her hair.
Here's a layout of our day... 10 am to 3 pm.
Classic Bird's Nest. Thankfully, Jeanine said I'd been taking good care of her hair, so I didn't have to carry around that nagging doubt that I'm not doing it right. This is combed out before the shampoo.
Shampooing. I know from experience that this is not easy. She has SO MUCH HAIR that it takes forever to get the shampoo in AND out. We both agreed that having a hair washing station like this at home would be awesome.
The Deep Condition. We tried to have fun, starting to realize that this was going to take longer than we thought... and also thanking God that Habtamu was not with us. I could barely hold MY act together.
I think it looks like I have a halo. Ha ha. I was pretty ok at this point, flipping through mags and still thinking that maybe we'd be done in time for a late lunch... like 1 p.m. That empty Tupperware container was our snack. Gone by 10:30 a.m., both of us claiming that the other had had the lion's share.
Rinsed out and waiting to dry. After rinsing the conditioner out, her hair was put into big braids and back she went under the dryer.
Flat Ironing. Next, section by section, her hair was flat ironed. I do mean small section by small section... this part took about 2 hours. Did I mention she has a lot of hair? As soon as she saw the first section straight at her face, she was riveted to her own image. Did I mention she was already riveted to her own image?
Beauty is not without pain. You can see her wince in the mirror.
Beauty. I knew she was pretty, but dang.
New Friends. It was fun hanging out with the ladies at the shop. We had a long time to hang out.
We spent all of the next day keeping her hair from getting wet, so she could have this hair for family pics Wednesday night. Mission accomplished.