Saturday, 25 September 2010

Autumn sets in and we should be far away

                                    dawn from the guest bedroom 7am

We should not be here, home that is. Having seen a free week on the calendar we arranged a trip south to sponge off friends and family. Once organised Julie got an infection making it too uncomfortable to travel, I seem to have got a cold to keep her company in her misery. With luck we will recover quickly enough to make a revised version of the trip next weekend, after that various commitments and the miserable state of the roads once the autumn / winter sets in lead us to hibernate.

Autumn,a time of mellow jamfullness. I would be tempted to make some apple jelly but have been reminded this week that just 100 calories extra per day is ten pounds on the body in a year! What a stupid design we have been built to!

I have found a way to try and speed up recovery, it is convoluted logic but it will work I bet. I need a new passport, have done for years since it has a picture of a terrorist on it from ten years ago! I have the forms at last and the letter from the gender clinic saying “Not a Boy” so I need a photograph conforming to a dozen finicky rules. Before I get a photograph made I have to at least try to look half decent, it is going to have to last for ten years and remind me of how I once was as the wrinkles take over. Some of my girlfriends have been giving me a little grief for my long straggly hair style despite my french hippie windsurfing hairdressers changes to my look. Some while ago I helped one girlfriend get to her hairdressers when she had her broken leg in plaster, she was going a bit demented with the state of her hair and I had suitable transport so. Parking had been arranged at the lower ground floor entrance and she was helped into a chair to provide me with an hours entertainment with chat, a pile of women’s magazines and constant supply of coffee and biscuits. The stylist, Sally, was great and kept saying that she would love to have a go at doing something with my long hair. At this point It had not been near a hairdresser since I was at school decades before and the idea still terrified me since this had been my defining look and signifier for nearly forty years. Yesterday I decided I had to finally give in, I can’t get out to France so I have to do something here. I did a few hours work last week, a rare event these days but it earned enough to venture through the doors of the expensive salon so many of my girlfriends frequent. I entered the reception and said what I was after and who I wanted to do it, I had by now calculated it was about five years since I had been here, it would have been effortless if the gorgeous Laura had been on reception since she knows me well but it was her day off. While I was trying to arrange a slot in Sally’s schedule she appeared and remembered me! Ice broken and she knows what I am after (I hope). First slot available is on Friday and they are happy to pencil me in even knowing I may have to change, they will also call if a slot opens with any cancellation. This is all bound to cure us and sweep us away south with hair still in a mess.
I am still not convinced that it can grow back if I don’t like it! Playing with hair and presentation is one of the things which I have regretted not being able to do in my past life. 
Hairdressers have held a strange place in my memories. It was my mother who always took me to the hairdresser, never my father though it was his hairdresser we went to. It was as loathsome to me as going to the dentist. I never liked waiting there on the shiny leather seats and all the large hard males all around with their incomprehensible banter. An odd masculine odour filled the air, a mixture of masculine sweat and their strange hair oils and Brylcreme gunk for styling. When my time came a board was placed over the arms of the barbers chair and a piece of the endless snake of cottonwool was pushed round my collar to seal the gap to the sheet which wrapped me. I hated even being here and had probably been ambushed or dragged in quite unnecessarily in my opinion, who needs such short hair cut? Then the complete irony, There was something satisfying about the snip snip snip sound circling round my head and a strange quiet battle occurred as my head would resist each and every attempt he made to move it to a different position all resulting in a cold empty feeling round my neck. I guess this was the closest I came to encountering close personal attention but what a high price to pay for those few moments then the horror of the result. The final flicks of a brush before removing the sheet and cotton wool were theatrical and useless since hairs always remained under the collar to remind me of the torture on my way home.
My two visits to Alaine in France have not produced anything like the same sensations of brief pleasure since I have been concentrating on the process too much and on the last visit stretching my poor French past it’s limit trying to chat! Julie is very poor value for money, I thought going with her would be interesting but she does not chat! Nothing past a request to cut it! What will next week bring?
The seasons have changed and a chill set in. I rolled out the carpet which I rescued just as a friend was about to jettison it a few years back, it both cheers up the winter hibernation look and adds some insulation. Soon time to watch the movies I have been recording. Julie drinks the Whisky.


  1. It is amazing how a few things can make a room feel totally different; in this case, warmer.

    What a gorgeous morning and the view! You need to leave that once in a while just to come back and be able to say ahhh.

    I have hair envy :P

    Hope you both feel well soon!


  2. Oh, I never wanted to cause hair envy. I still have more than most at my age and hope a "stylist" can perform the miracle of making it look presentable and covering the recession, fingers crossed.

  3. Yes, get well soon both of you!

    One of my great luxurious girl moments occurs in my bloke-life, I get my hair cut at the same salon as my wife, by a lovely lady who grew up only a few miles from where I did and who is an expert hairdresser. I turn up early and mentally sink straight into girl territory as I sit reading magazines and soaking up the atmosphere. I have to be slightly careful to ensure that my conversation stays just on the bloke side of the gender divide because I'm not out to her, but it's still an extremely pleasurable experience. I only wish I could grow it out and lose the bloke style. So anyway, I completely understand your looking forward to it!

  4. Wonderful view, and hopes for a speedy recovery. I've just posted with Melissa, about how cool the evenings are here now. Tonight feels very chilly. Julie has excellent taste, single Malt? Laphroaig by any chance? Add an open fire and you are living in heaven.

    PS where is the tartan rug?

  5. Claire, so that's why they took so log to load, you can read the whisky labels! They overdo the peaty flavour now so it has been diluted with a lowland malt.

    Going to have to get a recording of an open fire for the tv, the house is stone built starting in the 1840's and the chimneys are not in good shape. Julie does have a clan affiliation but we choose not to live in Brigadoon. I would never in that past life have worn anything so butch as a kilt especially being born far to the south.

  6. I can't wait to see your new hairstyle. I used to love going to the salon to get my hair done.
    Sadly, there is nothing left to style anymore. Now I get my hair out of a box! I haven't been to a barber for a men's style haircut, since I was in the Army forty years ago, but I do remember how relaxed I could get, while they went about combing and clipping. There was something almost hypnotic about it.

    Lovely pictures. Is that the North Sea? No wonder you get such chilling temperatures.

    The carpet does add a sense of warmth to the room. Warmer on the feet too!

    Melissa XX

  7. Yes that is the estuary opening into the north sea, that is why the evenings are cool in the summer.

    The hair thing is somewhere between exciting and scary. I have no idea what I may look like, just have to go on trust and hope that others like it. It could be a challenge with the recession to hide. I bet we get away for a while and have to reschedule!

  8. I love the name of your blog!

  9. I hope that we get to see a picture of you as soon as it's done. I hate hairdressers, I had just found a tame one and she left the village!

    Look after yourselves.

  10. If you can find a hair stylist that you trust, then you can relax. And that's a really nice feeling. I love to be pampered in the salon I go to. My stylist takes good care of me and never does anything that I don't want.

    And it does grow back. :)

  11. I recognise those views!
    Its such a lovely room, tempting to sleep with the curtains open just for the view. :-)
    Cant wait to see the picture of the new hair style. You have such lovely long hair and so many options open for you.
    Have you a style in mind?


Many thanks to all who ever joined in the conversation and to those who took the time to follow my zig zag to a new life..

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