Did you ever see that movie, "Steel Magnolias"? You know, the one with Dolly Parton, Julia Roberts, Sally Fields, Shirley MacLaine, Daryl Hannah and Olympia Dukakis ... Surely you have. I KNOW all you southern gals have; it's a "Southern Classic" where much of the dialogue takes place in Truvy's Beauty Parlor. The little town where we have our lake house, Natchitoches, Louisiana, is where the writer is from and also where the movie was filmed. ANYWAY...back to the point. If you saw that movie then you know what both a "Beauty Shop" AND a "Beautician" is.
A "Beauty Shop" is a purely southern place that still exists in small rural towns. There's the gossip, the "beauticians" who have been working there...FOREVER and if that's not enough to entertain you try watching the clientele come in and out. I used to drop my mother off and run off to get her groceries or run some other errands but I have come to enjoy this "Beauty Shot Banter" and decided to just bring my knitting in and sit back for the show.
Tight blue jeans, big hair, a thick southern drawl and a degree from "The College of Hard Knocks" to assist their clients with all problems shared in the chair is a MUST for the beautician in the southern beauty shop. I just sit quietly back, knitting and listening and at times grab a snippet of conversation that requires me to pause for a moment to look up and zoom in on the conversation. And the "Hair-Do's" (Yep! That's what the hairstyles are referred to in a beauty shop). OH MY GOODNESS. Yesterday alone I saw an elderly (no really, elderly, I'm not lying...) woman with gray hair getting her hair done. I looked once and it was all in curls. When I looked again it was teased into the biggest fro you have ever seen! And before she walked out, all that hair had been reigned into a small bun in the back with a pouf in the front. I'm thinking maybe beauticians really ARE magicians.
Anyway, it was quite a morning because my mother's beautician was running late. Because she had a water leak at her house that morning. And everybody decided to sit around and wait for their turn. And, as usual, I glanced over to see my mother talking to a lady. Patting her on the back. Now my mother is a real social butterfly and talks to strangers all the time. If she talks to them long enough she usually finds someone they know in common. She always comments what a small world it is. No, we live in a super small town. And almost everyone here is related in some way. But I digress. I was concentrating on my knitting again when I looked up and there my mother stood with this woman in front of me. I seriously didn't want to lose my count in my knitting project but also didn't want to appear rude by not looking up to make eye contact (oh the dilemmas I get myself into...). I wondered if this was a new friend or old one. She actually knew this woman from way back and introduced her to me and before I knew it she was looking at pictures of my grand kids on my cell phone (sigh...did I really do that? OK, my mother told me to. Does that make it better?!)
So, bottom line is: My mother's beautician was a bit of a magician because she got her hair all fixed up after my mother had attempted to cut it herself (ugh...the way too short bangs story). She got all caught up on her gossip AND ran into an old friend. She looked nice and the sun was actually peeking through the clouds (Yay!) so with the dreariness gone for the day, we headed out to do her grocery shopping and get lunch. The "Beauty Shop" was great fun. As a spectator sport, ya know. And I got caught up on my knitting in the process. So, if you don't live in a southern rural area then you MUST rent "Steel Magnolias", grab a bowl of popcorn and get ready to laugh and cry.