Although I don’t get to go as much as I’d like, I love to go to the nail shop and get my nails done.
And so does the Diva. Natch!
NG1 is still reeling from the haircut I made her get and the dress shoes I made her buy last year and opts not to be a part of our nail fiesta.
This past weekend, the three of us who celebrate our femininity in this way went to get our nails done, boldly walking into a shop that I had previously forever crossed off my list. Or maybe they had forever crossed me off their list.
The last time we were in there, the Diva spilled a bottle of their nail polish. She can be a little squirmy sometimes. Go figure.
“Mark that one off the list,” I said to myself at the time. “Now we have to go across town to get our nails done,” as the nail personnel in rapid Vietnamese talked, I’m sure, about something besides how sadistic my Precious One is, dirty looks notwithstanding. Reminded me of a video I once saw:
Question: why do we allow ourselves to be intimidated by stuff like this? Well, I, for one, got fed up.
On Saturday, I said to my girls, “That’s it! I’m the customer, and I’m not afraid to go in there and get my nails done! I don’t care if they talk about me in 15 different languages. That will not interfere with their ability to do good nails (think Darryl Hannah in Steel Magnolias).”
As a side note, I have taught English to Vietnamese students for a few years. Wanting to impress their teacher, perhaps improving their grade, they offered to call me on my cell while I was participating in this beauty ritual and translate for me. I’m thinking that’s a marketable service.
Once I asked them why they have that little Buddha statue in the front of the shop and why they give him food and water.
“Don’t you know he’s not real?” I asked. “At the end of the day, when the food is still there, don’t you get it?”
On the day this handy topic came up there were students from Korea, Japan, and China in the class, as well. They all answered that they recognized that he was not real and that the food was symbolic, that Buddha needed to eat to be happy. That fat = happy.
Now, here I am with the body of a linebacker, right? Looking at a classroom full of willow-thin Asian students, trying to follow their logic. So I think for a minute. They hold their breath as they look at me because they know something’s about to happen.
Here’s what I say: “So you mean to tell me that fat equals happy, right?”
“Yes,” they reply in unision.
“Then,” I say, “by those terms, I should be the happiest person in this room. And I’m not the one who’s Buddhist! How much sense does that make?”
I tell the students I’m not threatened by other faiths, but I prefer the thing make sense at least.
They just laugh and wait with bated breath for us to return to the exciting topic of participial adjectives or phrasal verbs or some equally enthralling subject.
Fast-forward to last Saturday: I marched into that nail shop with my girls, and I was prepared to do battle.
Only I didn’t have to.
There was a totally different crop of workers from the last time I’d been in there, and none of them knew who we were. Apparently, they don’t study the “Do Not Do This Woman’s Nails” poster in the back of the shop as closely as they should.
The Diva and I sat quietly as we got our nails did (not a typo), not wanting to rock the boat too much. I mean, no sense in ticking them off, right? They might go check the posters and then we’d have to walk out of there with half-painted nails.
NG2, however, not being from around here and not understanding “the rules,” forged ahead. She was having her toenails done and didn’t like where the lady put the flower. She asked her to take it off and move it, which meant taking off all the polish underneath it.
“Oh, no,” I thought to myself. “Here we go.” I looked over at the Diva. She was sitting up a little straighter because she knew it was coming.
And sure enough, we were off! Much like the hens in the Hen Pen, those women started clucking in Vietnamese, I’m sure about something other than the fact that my host daughter was the spawn of Satan.
The Diva and I just looked at each other and smiled. NG2, gloriously, was unaware of the entire thing.
And she got her flower where she wanted it.
We could learn alot from people who are not from around here.