There is a certain level of discomfort when it comes to tipping waiters, service people, etc. Personally, I have always had a hard time tipping hairdressers, manicurists and other females working at ladies' salons in Kuwait.
The thing is, with waiters, you can simply leave the money on the table and go. With women at the salon, however, you have to fold your tip and carefully slide it into the woman's pocket before quickly prancing out. I don't know if any other women experience this but I become strangely giddy with shyness whenever I'm in this situation. Maybe it's because I have come to know more personal details about the women who do my hair and more. We sometimes chat, laugh and talk about miscellaneous and semi-personal issues but in the end, I leave them with a sincere thank you and a little bit of cash.
I wish they would just grab the money out of my hand. But no. They stand there, pretending to be oblivious to the up-and-coming tip. You have to go to the woman herself and do a subtle lunge before you slip the cash in her pocket which is more than often flattened out on her full bosom or placed on the side, near her lower torso in the midst of hair clips and bristly, blow drying brushes.
I wish every salon's uniform has a large tip pocket on the upper sleeve. That way, you can avoid the tipping dance, unnecessary contact with bosoms and anything near the lower hip region and the high possibility of the cash falling out.
I thought about this during the weekend. I did my hair and participated in the tipping dance and mind you, I innately avoided eye contact during the process before I scampered out of there thinking, "Does anyone else go through this?"
"Where do you get your hair trimmed Erzulie?" a good friend of mine asked me the other day. I told her that I go to my district's hair salon, "I just go to whoever's available. I cut an inch off after a couple of months, so it's no big deal." Apparently, my friend thought it was a very big deal. "I go to X salon and get my hair trimmed only by X hairdresser." Frankly, I forgot the name of the hair salon that my friend mentioned, let alone this sought after hairdresser who, according to my gal pal, "half of Kuwait goes to". "Before I discovered her, I was like you," she went on, "I used to get my hair trimmed by anyone. But then someone told me that when my current hairdresser trims your hair, it grows so much faster. I noticed the difference the first time she trimmed my hair and I've been going to her ever since."
What my friend is talking about here is "الإيد الخظرة" (pronounced el eed al-khathra; loosely translates to green hand) which, in this specific situation, means that when you get your hair trimmed by someone with a blessed touch – so to speak – your hair will grow faster and stronger. I didn't buy in my friend's belief because I believe that hair growth is something biological; I don't think that someone with a pair of scissors is (supernaturally able to) make my hair grow faster than the next person with the same tool at hand. My friend responded by saying, "It's like cooking. Sometimes, two people can have the same exact recipe but the outcome can be totally different: person A's dish can be delicious while person B's might fall flat. Same thing goes for gardening (a reference to having a green thumb). When it comes to hair trimming, it all depends on the goodness and selflessness of your hairdresser's soul and spirit."
I listened to my friend's rationale but I didn't buy it. Cooking and gardening are skills. Cutting hair, something that a child can do, and having the ability to make it grow faster is not. I did know where my friend was coming from, but I felt that it was based on superstitions, not facts.
Have you ever heard of the above? If so, do you believe in its factuality? Why or why not?
PS It's been a long time since I've put up some new dance music. Hope you enjoy this as much as I did :)