Wednesday, 6 August 2008

Yet another farewell

Today I went to my hairdresser.

When I was new in Sweden and needed a haircut, I asked one of Staffan’s female colleagues where to go and got a prompt reply that nice Swedish girls didn’t go to hairdresser’s, they cut their hair themselves. It was no more true than other statements I heard about nice Swedish girls, such as they didn’t wear bras or paint their nails or shave their legs. I just happened to ask a wrong person. But when in Rome… Yet I didn’t fancy cutting my own hair and went to the first beauty parlour I saw which was a disaster. For a long time I let my hair grow, and it finally became quite unkempt. When we moved into our house I definitely needed a haircut and went to a parlour in the neighbourhood shopping centre. That’s how I met Anita who eventually became much more than a hairdresser. When you go to the same person for a haircut twenty-six years running, you get to know each other well. She saw me with a big pregnant belly, she saw me pushing prams, she followed my ups and downs. I have watched photos of her grandchildren change from babies to teenagers. A couple of times she heard me on the radio and told me she was proud to know me. She did my hair for my professorial inauguration and for my fiftieth birthday party. We know everything about each other’s maladies, joys and sorrows.

On the way home I went into our local grocery store to buy milk and eggs for my last meals.

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