Thursday, May 27, 2010

Maria Bonita

My Mother, "And what are you going to do with your hair? Me, "Omgosh, you're killing me." Yips, I've been busy lately with living and writing. I wasn't giving graduation much thought. Or was I trying not to think about it?

Any how, for the past four birthdays Maria Bonita has done my hair. (Party or no party, I think it's important to appreciate one's self.) At past arrivals at Maria Bonita I've said things like, "Okay this is what I wanna do...Can you do it?" And they have. They have brought a number of my visions to life...They have also talked me away from some very un-flattering ideas. The good stylists will do that. When we look sharp, so do they.  

When the hair question came up, I knew that I wanted Maria Bonita because I know I can count on them, and I guess I was being a little sentimental about it...So I called to find out what their opening hour was. 10 a.m. they said, and at that I concluded that it wouldn't work, since graduation was scheduled to begin at 10:30 a.m.   

A few days after that I went to Soho, Maria Bonita's neighborhood, to meet a friend. On the way to this friend I thought, go over there and explain. So, that's what I did. I told them of my time predicament. And if someone felt like coming in early, great. If not, I would be sad, but I had to try.

A few hours later I received a voicemail from Maria Bonita with a request for me to confirm an 8:30 a.m. appointment for Wednesday morning. After disconnecting I cried. (I've been happy crying a lot lately. If you see me crying on a park bench some where, I just want you to know that I'm happy.)

At 8:20 a.m. I was greeted by Nonato Santo, or Raymond Santo (Or just Ray.) at the salon. At this greeting I expressed my gratitude. Cuz who volunteers to come into work an hour and a half early? When I got into the chair Ray went to it, because a ton of time is something I didn't have. Although, I was oddly relaxed about the whole thing.

When we got to talking I learned that Ray has been cutting hair for twenty-seven years. (Bravo.) And that he is Brazilian, which I guess adds up since Maria Bonita is a Brazilian salon. If you're Brazilian, or if you're well acquainted with one, then you would know that taking care of the body is a very serious matter. I have a Brazilian mother, believe me, I know this to be true.

While we were talking a woman entered the shop to ask if she could get an early morning appointment for the following day. Ray amiably told her that she would have to call and ask since they opened at 10 a.m.... I don't think she was super content about that since she asked why I was there before 10. Ray responded, "Well, she's a special customer." Then she left. And I thought, huh, how cool, and haha. Common, she was impolite. (My hair from a previous birthday.)

When Ray finished blow drying my hair straight he asked how we were on time. I think I said something like, "we have plenty of time." Which really didn't make any sense at all, which he knew because he kept rushing.

At 9:24 a.m. Ray did the finishing touches of putting some type of glaze in my hair. The only thing left to do after that was to take a few shots of the salon, then it was time to depart. During the go process Ray told me to "run," as he handed me my coffee that I would have deserted there. For a person who was supposed to be in a rush, I was not rushing very much?

Was I pleased with the end result? I have never left Maria with a -- well, I guess it's okay -- feeling. Eleven out of eleven times, I've walked out of there feeling like I should be starring in an action film. (That means six stars.)
A side note about the dress. Yes, this is the Roni dress. Instead of the belt I ran to a fabric shop for ribbon.
Final thought on this story. Obrigado Nonato. Siento especial.

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