Today I decided that after two months of frugal living, it was time for some beauty. I took some reading for tomorrow’s seminar and made my way along Broadway until I reached the first of a cluster of nail bars offering manicure and pedicure deals. The 25 buck combo seemed a good price and I went in.
It was a mid-afternoon lull, and three assistants were seated at their manicure tables scrolling down their IPhones. They looked up without particular enthusiasm but the oldest of the three got up and settled me in reclining position into a large chair. It would have been bliss to sink back and close my eyes but the mental deal I had done with myself was to do some work during the pedicure so I conscientiously got it out.
Either the woman had little English or she thought I did, so the whole pedicure was managed through gesture. In that British knee-jerk way I overthanked her throughout the procedure which made her smile. I liked this woman, her beautiful red lipstick and her gentleness , so I was momentarily disappointed to be transferred to a rather bored looking junior for my hands. A middle-aged man came in for a manicure , and sang unselfconsciously, ‘Whats it all about, Alfie?’ and then a song by Adele. I noticed the leaves swirling outside and a yellow school bus going past. An older man peered through the window and took a photo with an expensive looking camera.
Before I left the older woman made some final touches to my toes, wrapping my feet in cling film to protect her work. I had enjoyed this indulgent interlude and thanked them one last time as I left, but they were all deep in their IPhones and didn’t look up.