Remember this photo?
I have a confession to make (in case other photos haven't given my secret away). I never cut my hair in a bob this year. The layers fell in such a way so as to give the appearance of one. And I loved the photo. So much so that I was ready to run out the next day and manifest my destiny. But on my mother's advice I allowed myself two weeks to mull it over...to make the cut or not? I liked it. Unfortunately, I'm knew deep down that my massive amount of hair would never lay quite like that. And so I continued to let the hair grow. And grow it did. Suddenly. So suddenly it seems to have gotten long. Really long.
In Bed, Bath, and Beyond yesterday, I encountered one of the most helpful people I've met in months. He was standing in front of the vacuums giving information to customers. I approached and said, "I want your best vacuum. But I don't want to pay $550. I have bed bugs."
"Ahhh," he said, "follow me." And he led me to the steamers. "This, this is what will get them--eggs and all." A steamer?! Success. Steamers are wildly cheaper than vacuums and will empower me to treat all of my clothes myself. Can you imagine the dry cleaning bill if I had to send away everything I own--I'm not just talking about washing everything, I'm talking about that AND dry cleaning every nice dress, suit, etc. that now hangs silently and patiently in my closet. This Antonio character had just saved me upwards of $400 (vacuum and laundering expenses). Not only that, he directed me away from the $80 bed bug covers ($160 for the two I would need) and indicated that the $12 covers in combination with other measures (steamers, natural oils) would serve me just fine. Antonio made me a very happy girl.
I left with a bounce in my step.
I was quickly weighed down by the five bags in my arms. Don't let appearance, wealth, or status deceive you. At heart, every New Yorker is a bag person. Think about it--we don't have cars in which to dump all of our stuff as we go out and about for the day. The necessities for a day's errands are housed in the hundred little bags we carry on our arms (or the one bag that is the equivalent of a Ford Expedition SUV).
So it began with the five bags, coupled with my inability to find my monthlong metro-card. Add in the sweat-yielding humidity and my blue plastic rain coat, as well as the MTA's inability to take anything other than cash (which of course, I never have). These things on top of a restless night of sleep the night before (for fear of the bed bugs) and I started to cry.
I threw my hand up in the air, hailed a cab, and decided I'd take it all the way home. This would have been one expensive cab ride, but based on all the savings Antonio had provided me with, I didn't care. That is until two dollars and 90 cents into the ride (keep in mind it costs 2 dollars and 50 cents just to get in), I found my metro card in my book of David Sedaris essays. I did not find this funny. I asked to get out, and tipped him 2 dollars for his troubles. This is how I managed to pay $5 for a cab ride around one city block.
And so it was with my five bags, my sweat-drenched back, and a somewhat-tear-stained-face that I took the long subway ride home and decided it was time to cut my hair. Of course, bed bugs and frustration? A haircut was the obvious remedy! How could it have taken me so long to figure out? Not a huge cut. Not a huge change. I won't be getting the bob. Just a few inches. Time to cut the dead-ends out of my life. Lighten things up a bit. I need some bounce in my hair--maybe then I'll get taht bounce back in my step.