Yesterday I had my hair done.  My roots were really, really bad.  To the point of humiliation.  So I went to George Pais Hair Salon and had my trusty hairdresser Susan hook me up with some dye.  Susan has an assistant, I’m not sure of her name;  I’ll just call her Melon.  (Don’t laugh, I’ve met a Kiwi, an Apple and a Peach here in Taipei.  So calling someone Melon isn’t a huge stretch.)  So Susan and Melon were working on my bad roots and jabbering away in Chinese.  In fact, everyone in the place was jabbering away in Chinese; everyone but me.  I was quietly reading in English.

Susan and Melon are very meticulous with their coloring.  It takes the two of them together twice as long as it takes my hairdresser Papaya in Utah.  (OK, her name isn’t really Papaya, it’s Polly–as in wanna-cracker.)  So as they were working, I was completely zoned-out as to what was going on around me–entirely engrossed in my book.  I don’t want to say what the book was because I’m a little embarrassed.  All right, you talked me into it–it was Julie Andrews’ autobiography.  I’m pretty sure that I’ve seen The Sound of Music more times than any other movie.  I suppose I’ve revealed more embarrassing things about myself on this blog than admitting that I’m a huge Julie Andrews fan.

So I was zoned out–reading all about Julie’s childhood of poverty, when I noticed some sort of hullabaloo going on in the salon.  People were kind of running around; but since I’m used to reading with hullabaloo going on around me (i.e. my four kids) I just kept right on reading.  The hullabaloo increased in intensity, as did my resolve to finish the chapter I was on.  Then suddenly, Susan (who had left Melon to work on my hair alone for a few minutes) came running up to us and said that the salon was on fire!

I stood up and put my flip-flops on, which I had taken off to get a pedicure from Avocado while Susan and Melon were working away up top. (When I told my husband this story, I omitted the pedicure part, because he just doesn’t get the whole pedicure allure.)  It was then that I noticed flames coming out of the small kitchen that was off the main part of the upstairs salon.  Now at this point, you’re probably imagining me running screaming from the burning building, but that’s not what I did.  Instead, I just stood there looking at the flames and thinking to myself, Hmm, that’s something you don’t see everyday.  When suddenly, the gentleman in the chair next to mine grabbed a fire extinguisher from the corner and went to work on the fire.  At this point, Susan said that we should probably go downstairs.

Now here’s the part that reveals what a shallow person I am.  As we were walking down the stairs, my only thought was, But what about my hair?  I have a half-done dye job here!  As if reading my shallow thoughts, when we got to the bottom of the stairs, Susan told me to sit down in a nearby chair.  Then, as the firemen were running up and down the stairs with their hoses and axes, Susan and Melon finished coloring my roots.  It was all very dramatic, but in the end, I am not longer humiliated by my bad roots–notwithstanding George Pais Hair Salon’s charred kitchen.

Moral of the story:  Hair coloring knows no obstacle–including burning buildings.

7 thoughts on “FIRE!!!!!

  1. Erin, you really are funny. I enjoy your blog very much. You’ve given me one more reason I’ve decided to stay gray. I burned my hair off with a curling iron when we first arrived in Spain. The color they used there only lasted 2 weeks so I decided to go a la naturale. I’ve never been sorry. I DON’T HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT ROOTS! And I don’t get caught in salon fires! Send me your email, I have something to talk to you about.

  2. Erin, that was the funniest thing I’ve read in a long time…well, since your last post 🙂
    Will you send me your email, also? By the way, I picked up 3rd-culture kids and thought it was incredibly negative! How do you dare raise 3rd culture kids if that book is your only resource? I think we should write a better one!

    1. It’s true that it is negative, but the second half is much more positive. The book shows the realities of raising kids overseas and all the different emotions and problems that parents may face–not that we face all of them. So I think that it’s good to go into this lifestyle prepared for what may come. But it’s true, we should write a better one. Just yesterday I was talking with one of Noah’s teachers. She just started at my kids’ school this year and was previously in Qatar. She has a collegue from Qatar who moved back to the States and is teaching in a public school again and said that she can’t believe the difference in the depth of the kids. She said that the expat kids were just so much broader and had world-views and compassion that the kids in the States couldn’t even dream of. It’s not the easiest thing, living abroad, but definitely worth it!

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