Sunday, June 5, 2011

Italian Hairdresser and lunch

I finally got my courage in hand, and went to an Italian hairdresser.  Besides the name, parrucchieri, which is a devil to pronounce with 2 sets of double consonants, the place itself is intimidating to me. I must tell you I have the same feeling going into a new hairdresser in the U.S.  These places for women are like the piazza, in that once you are known, you are welcomed and treated differently, but going in the first time, I feel awkward and have that sense that everybody knows what to do but me.

Going into an Italian place was also weird.  First, the people in here speak no English.  I looked up the words I thought I would need but once inside I wasn't sure if I said I wanted my hair cut or did I say I wanted a slice of meat?  Hmmm.  They did look at me oddly but they didn't scrunch up their little eyes like they do when I say something totally off beat.

Armonie (harmony) is a very modern place.  When I told Antoniette I had gone there, she waved her hands in circles saying I had probably paid too much because it was new and modern.  I thought I would have a better chance of a modern haircut in such a place.  So after requesting either a cut or a slice, I sat down.  It felt familiar but different as so many things do here in Umbria.  They were buzzing around, joking, singing, carrying on with each other and the customers.

Ok. a side note about music in Italy, it is all in English.  I have only heard Italian music in homes and where there is a much older crowd, like plus 70.  The song that is constantly played here is The Lazy Song....slackers and Italians unite.  For those of you who don't know the song, I will put down only the lyrics of the first stanza, after that it gets rather ribald as he is home alone having sexual fantasies....

"Today I don't feel like doing anything
    I just wanna lay in my bed
Don't feel like picking up my phone, so leave a message at the tone
  "Cause today I swear I'm not doing anything"

This song plays everywhere.  Italians sing along happily to this stanza, fortunately they don't sing the rest of it.

Back to my haircut.  Anna finally comes to get me.  I ask if she speaks English she says poco, which means not at all.  We carry on in Italian, and hand gestures which is fine.  As I sit there I notice one big difference between these places and ones at home, there are tons of little girls coming in. In all my years of going to hairdressers, I have seen maybe one kid who came in to get a hair cut (are there special salons for this in the US?) but today there are 3 different sets of mothers with kids, I mean young kids.  One is about 18 months probably her first haircut.  She is adorable. They show her how it won't hurt.  They have special Shrek robes to put the kids in, and they all get scissor cuts with little bows in their hair.  This making of Italian princesses starts early.

Back to my haircut.  She puts me in the chair, after a nice shampoo, and musses it about like American hairdressers and then pushes it this way and that way.  She shows me how my hair should be longer on the side to help disguise my fat little face and she begins to snip away.
I am happy with the haircut.  It costs 20E
Here I am

The Stoic One also went to the hairdresser.  He only needed to say "corto" or short.

Now Lunch......

After the haircut we go to Nonna Gelsa's for lunch.  This is our "go to " place here. 

Delicious roast pork

Very good wine for 2.50E per glass
Capsico Rosso Abruzzo '02

1 comment:

  1. We lived in London for a few years, my partner and I were both in need of a haircut just a few weeks after arriving and we walked by the salons on the high street where you can clearly see the prices for their services. We both have thinning hair, he basically has 'none' but still likes to fuss over what's left. We couldn't see spending $30 in a US barber shop for the amount of work needed to run clippers around and was certainly not going to spend 25pounds (about $30US) in London for the same thing. We did find a hole-in-the-wall shop near a bus stop and walked in. The place was owned, run and staffed by Polish immigrants! Apparently our neck of the London woods has a need for a Polish barber shop. There was a language barrier for sure. I basically pick up the clipper guards and found the number needed and places it on my head where I wanted. Done! The problem of returning when the same barber was there was another challenge.