Saturday, January 3, 2009

12/23 Hair

Nothing seems quite as easy as back home in the States. At home, if one of us girls wanted a haircut, I would call my cousin, Marilyn, and make an appointment at The Country Stylist. Well, we are not back home and although Thomas is able to use the clippers we brought to give himself a trim, we prefer a bit longer locks. After being here seven months, we were ready for a haircut so the search began. We asked our friend in Bontoc for a recommendation and Alexie, Alayna, and I walked to the place she suggested. Being able to walk right in is nice but we decided we were not quite ready for her, I mean him, to cut our hair. We then went to another salon but it was closed. The next day we returned to the salon only to be told the stylist was in Baguio. We made an "appointment" for the next day. At least we thought we made an appointment, when we returned we were told the stylist was once again away. The owner kindly offered to take us to her other salon. We followed her until it became obvious she was taking us to the first place. We decided to pass, thinking we would rather have long hair.

When we found ourselves waiting for hours at the SM mall in Manila until time for the bus to leave back to Bontoc, we decided to try again. We were able to find a place offering a shampoo and haircut for 120 pesos (under $3). The salon resembled one in the States except our hair was washed in cold water and you pay first. There was quite a bit of attention paid to us and many Barbie comments. I think Annalise had almost every stylist come and touch her golden hair. They were all women stylists so that was nice. Alexie got about 5 inches trimmed from her hair, Annalise 2, both just all one length. Adriana got a trim too. I just asked the stylist to follow the style she already had. Then for Alayna and I... I have worn my hair in the same style for several years. Nothing really complicated about it as it is cut to be all one length. But I was ready for something a bit different; nothing too drastic, about 4 inches shorter with a few long layers. Alayna has cut her own hair at least twice and we thought a few layers might help disguise the hair growing out from three years ago when she cut a few 1/4 inch bangs. If I had been in the States where English is spoken and understood, I would not have been concerned but I am not. So to help with the potential communication barriers I had copied a photo along with the instructions from the internet on the style we wanted. The trouble was this was in the backpack along with our passports that Thomas took to Immigration. He got back and the 2 of us headed back to the salon. I needed to go over and over what I wanted and showed the picture again and again. In the end there was only one stylist who could do what I wanted so we happily waited for her. She did a great job despite the fact she didn't seem to be too strong in English. We both got about 4 inches cut off and some long layers put in. It was quite an experience with about 3 other stylists watching as the stylist cut our hair. One said "You taught us a new hairstyle." So funny. Being the great mom I am I let Alayna get hers cut first so I could see how they did before I let them give it a try on mine!!


The final product


  1. Looks good! Have you tried cutting yourself? I bought a book some time ago and have been doing all our family for years. I still have trouble getting mine done however! I have done mine myself but it is really difficult. I'm sure you will never forget your experience!

  2. No I have never attempted cutting my girls hair or my own. I guess I still have memories of my mother's attempt at cutting my hair that were not very fond ones. Usually since none of us girls wear a hairstyle with bangs, we don't get our hair cut too often, at tops twice a year. Certainly the price here is very economical compared to back home. It just takes a lot more planning! It is always the first time that is most difficult. Now I know to avoid the local and plan when we are in a bigger city to get it done.

    Also on this trip, I was able to get whole wheat flour for the first time. This was not as economical, however, a 5 lb. bag was almost $10! We are savoring the homemade bread from this precious ingredient!