Today I enjoyed the full hairdressing experience.
And it was FABULOUS . Oh how I wish I could speak French. I know my Italian is getting better because I was speaking Italian in my head and hoping it would somehow turn into French.
I went across to the Madeline area, which is where new French friend Annie works and had helpfully made me an appointment.
You know its fairly exclusive when you have to buzz downstairs to be allowed in. It’s called Lenore Greyl and its on premier etage ( 1st floor) .
As Annie was not able to come along with me to translate I went onto Google translate last night and got appropriate phrases in French. What a giggle! Things like “I usually have foils in two colours”,”do whatever you think suits” . So I arrived and I’m shown into a change room and given a white coat to put on , then ushered into the salon where Olivia offered me tea. Then I met Giles, the colourist. He was charming , thinner than most of my friends, with George Clooney grey at the sides! Oh and he was gay. Not that I mind that because I knew he would be good. The number of ladies arriving and coming over in their white gowns to greet him, with the two-sided kiss kiss was a sure sign – he was good. So I explained in my non-existent French that I couldn’t speak French and he was equally bad at English. (shop staff speak better English as they get to talk to tourists) – Giles only gets to speak to the well heeled French.
Anyway he was lovely, as I whipped out my hand written phrases. He was very impressed! Or he did a good impression. He called over Pierre – the man who was to later cut my hair. Pierre was bald, (and would be right at home at the Open Bar in the Marais – Harrisons – you know what I mean). He couldn’t speak English so we mimed until a dashing cutter with long locks held back with a head band came over and managed a reasonable translation. I think his name was Eric. That’s what it sounded like.
Well we were on our way. Giles started playing with my hair and thinking. I could just about hear his thoughts so I pointed to the rather dark part and mimed OUT. He understood and went and mixed up the brew and away we went. I got the French version of foils. He did it painstakingly hair by hair with GLAD WRAP. I think he used a whole family sized roll just on my head. When he finally finished after an hour or so, we both nearly cheered! But I looked amazing. It rippled and shone and I seriously wanted a photo, but the other ladies would have died of shock so I contained myself.
As we couldn’t talk all that time I got to look around the salon with all it’s mirrors reflecting the other ladies. Some serious colour and cutting was happening. One lady had hers all done, did the kiss kiss goodbye – went out and changed and paid; then appeared back and got Pierre to redo the front! then slipped what I think was his tip in his rather tight pocket. At least I think that’s what it was. It could have been her phone number but I think he would rather hang out at the Open Bar.
Another lady had air kissed everyone in sight and then had two working on her. One on her nails and one doing a rather elegant roll at the back of her luxurious hair. I think she had a serious date tonight.
After waiting for the colour to take and reading magazines Giles rounded me up and we went to the basin area and he took out the glad wrap and started to massage my head. Heaven. I think I moaned! Hope not. Then it was time for more French talk and finally Pierre started on me. He was all serious and lifted and played with my hair and then used no less than 4 different pairs of scissors on me. It started to take shape and before long “voila!” said Pierre and there I was with my new French do.
I returned to the change room and then dear Giles came out to see me finished. I think he gasped, Carmel!!!! Anyway he was very proud of their combined efforts and I paid without wincing and was on my way feeling very glamourous .
I literally waltzed into Fauchon – the fantastic temple of all good things to eat and bought a little tin of chocolates for Steve as it was his birthday yesterday and I seem to be the one getting all the treats.
I then went to St Madelines church, a real wonder and very French, and continued walking towards Champs-Elysees and into the Grand Palais for an exhibition and then across the road to its baby the Petit Palais – which I think is gorgeous.
The lights were coming on and I crossed the river glancing towards the Eiffel Tower as it started to glitter. This city is amazing. I walked home and took a few photos of the hair do and then went out to dinner by myself. I looked so good it was amazing I didn’t get picked up!