Sharon by Barbera
Sharon and I visited the UK last summer. She had suggested in early spring cutting her shoulder length hair short the way her mother used to do it for her. She thought it looked cute. She described it as really, really close to her head all over. I could tell from pictures, however, that her hair was probably 3-4 inches long. So I suggested we wait until we got to the UK when we could have the time to enjoy the experience of a new look, so she agreed.
Shortly after we arrived she mentioned cutting her hair. She told me she still had her heart set on getting it really close to her head, and asked if I minded. (I knew this meant like 4 inches long… not good enough, I thought). But I was glad she remembered and told her since most tourists probably just wanted a trim it would be important to emphasize she wanted it really short. She spread her fingers about 4-5 inches apart. I suggested she let the stylist make a few suggestions before she jumped in, since there were a lot of great new looks in Europe.
That afternoon while she rested in the hotel I took a quick trip over to the Carnaby district. This is a really wild part of town and well worth the tourist’s visit. As I browsed around I stopped and talked to a few girls who had their hair buzzed extremely close. I asked where they got it done. Two of them had done each other’s. I told them my girlfriend was thinking of getting hers cut but was very nervous. She needed a stylist who didn’t ask a lot of questions and would be ready to buzz it off without a lot of discussion. The third girl told me of a salon just off the main street. She admitted it wasn’t “straight” but the woman, Leanne, who ran it was always more than anxious to cut anyone’s hair short, and had been know to do so on many occasions even without the clients full consent.
I went over and met Leanne, the one and only stylist. I explained that ever since we planned to tour England my girlfriend had her heart set on getting her hair really buzzed close to her head. Since we were just tourists this would give her a few weeks to get used to it and let it grow out a bit before heading home to shock everyone. I also explained she was getting a bit nervous and was having second thoughts. Since she’d been wanting to do it for such a long time it seemed a shame if she let the opportunity go by because of a few butterflies in her stomach. I explained she was still determined to try a Carnaby Street salon because she felt stylists would be more aggressive and not find cutting off so much hair strange. But to actually sit there and tell someone to buzz her hair was starting to scare her. I said she’d been thinking instead to just ask to have “everything cut really close”. If it ended up that everything got buzzed off that was OK, but she just didn’t have the nerve to get into a discussion about it.
I told her I was sure if she had to wait a long time or sit staring into the mirror before things got started she’d probably chicken out. Leanne smiled and agreed that if Sharon really wanted to try it, it would be a shame not to take advantage of being on vacation. She told me most girls get nervous before doing something like that, but she was used to handling that and could make sure second thoughts would be too late.
The next day we were touring Carnaby Street. We stopped for lunch at a little pub right across form Leanne’s salon and had a few pints before lunch. I pointed out the shop from the day before and suggested we go over after we finished and see if they had a long wait.
The place was empty except for Leanne. She had seen us across the street. So when Sharon came in she was all ready. Sharon sat in the chair and explained she didn’t want anything fancy, she just wanted it really close to her head all over. Leanne smiled and nodded, “Everything cut, really close?” Sharon agreed. Leanne continued, “That will be nice! You don’t want to have anything to take care of?” Sharon nodded again, more nervous than before. Leanne went on, “I can do everything the same all over!” Sharon seemed pleased.
Suddenly the clippers swept right down the center of her head and she was on her way to a skinhead. The woman smiled and told her how different she was going to look without any hair. Sharon gasped and strained to see the mirror. Leanne told her there was no point stopping now. Sharon was in shock but 45 seconds later she was buzzed bare. She stared at herself, unsuccessful in holding back the tears. She was very upset and frightened.
When we left the shop I kept staring at her. Her head was amazing. It was quite a souvenir to take home with us.