The Hairdresser

donkeyvEvery harbour village we visit becomes our favourite. Within a few hours we find the best place to buy bread and lemons, yoghurt and milk plus a mountain of fresh veg. We walk a few backstreets and read the chalked menu boards in front of an array of tavernas. Sometimes we’ll sit and enjoy a beer ( simon) and an ouzo ( kate) if we spot comfy chairs and a chatty host…and we always search out a swimming opportunity.
One of our favourite villages is home to my hairdresser. A lovely girl who recently admitted that she only makes an appointment time for me. Everyone else just turns up.
I should explain here that I only need a hair cut twice a year now, owing to the great enthusiasm with which my stylist wields her scissors! So our friendship continues by mobile phone and visits.
The salon is tiny and has just been upgraded with new mirrors and wonderful airconditioning. Clients sit around the walls and generally offer each other advice and assorted opinions in a non-stop stream of excited chatter.
Before her mum found a job ( looking after an old lady…morning, lunch time and to-bed for €40 per month!) she used to send cake or pie down to the salon in case the clients became peckish during the grooming sessions. The reported upside to this recent change is that the village bottoms are now shrinking back to their normal size.
So here we are, returning to this favourite village and our heroine is coming to supper.
Ah, a potential problem; Greek women are generally deeply suspicious of food eaten and cooked by foreigners ( remember the bunt… plus, ‘you don’t eat no MEAT!’)
And, what about the gangplank?
Well our friend gamely turned up and strode across the plank like a natural, skipping straight down the steps into the cabin to inspect the interior and admire our cushions. This lovely girl chatted and laughed and sipped the wine she had brought. She told us of her friends from school who married young and are now either separated or divorced. Of the one she has to collect from work at 1am. because there is no bus and the special ( once married) lass who now lives in a cellar with one window for €150 per month.
The villagers think she is a rich woman because she cuts hair all day long but actually she is about to open another tiny salon a few miles away; that will start a new thread of chatter for sure.
Well, of course Simon had to ask if the food passed the test….’does it taste Greek’ he enquired, knowing how hard I’d tried. ‘Mmmm…. a leeetle bit’ she unconvincingly replied.
Our open hearted guest laughed all evening, taught us a little Greek and asked us to pray for her. After doing so we opened our eyes and she exclaimed, ‘you forgot to ask God to give me a husband!’

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