Wednesday, March 26, 2008

What Ever Happened to Good Service??

So, I had a scheduled appt today to get my hair colored prior to getting this new set of sisterlocs. My appt was scheduled from last friday for 3:30pm. I went to work early just so I could get off and be done for the day. I called the stylist (I am a longstanding client, loyal and have sent her many referrals btw) to see if she was ready for me. No answer... not a problem, she is busy with someone else and can't get to the phone. I get to the salon and lo and behold, the door is locked with a closed sign on it and the clock saying will return at 3:30. Okay, take a deep breath because at this point it is 3:42 and no sign of her. It's dark in the shop that I am now peeping in and there are no signs of life. I get back in the car. I fidget, I say to myself, she's just running behind. I call my girlfriend Daena and we have a running joke... We start the converstion by saying "Note to self".......blah blah blah. Well my note to self was "when you make an appt and you get there and no one is waiting for you, how long do you wait?" It is now 3:55 and I am getting pissed. We lament about folk and how they do ya and I decide to just wait. After all, what else is there to do?? I have a afro puff that I can't even comb thru and my SL "consultation" is tomorrow at noon and I have dark black and gray roots that are NOT cute. I need some color!!! So, I wait. I proceed to call 2 other friends that share in my grief and whoa is me. We swap stories about hair stylists and nail technicians and people who just have no consideration for your time but God forbid you are late!!! Major attitude and such.

I call my DH (who at this point thinks I am insane over this hair drama but still loves me just the same). I don't know what I expected him to say but he listened as I went off. I went so far as to tape a note on the door because after all, at some point I would have to actually leave ya think?? Then, a young guy comes to the door and is looking for her as well. I roll down my window and badger him as to what services he was expecting and what time. He stated that she had been there earlier and told him that she would call him when she got back to the shop. I guess he didn't get a call and decided to just come because surely she must have forgotten. He said that she was supposed to color his hair as well. Meanwhile, I'm saying to myself, well at least she was here at some point and the clock is still ticking........... Finally, I'm on the phone again with yet another friend and she drives up and leisurely gets out of the car. I roll out of my durango and this is how the conversation went.

Me: Hey, what's up, I had a 3:30. It's now 4:45..

Her: Oh, I thought you were gonna call me...

Me: Call you?? We made an appt on friday nite. I sat in your chair while you combed me out and trimmed me and we decided to wait to do the color since my head was so tender from the takedown.

Her: Oh, I forgot to write it down and I don't even have your color. If I do it , it will be dark.
Me: (seething now with much attitude and tone) What do you mean you don't have the color and no, it won't be dark. I want the color that I have. My initial appt was for last Sat morning. What were you going to do then? (I'm thinkin she's trying to play me now)

Her: (With absolutely no remorse or feeling) Well, let me see if I have enough. Sit down and let me see your new growth. (she's fiddling and sectioning as my shoulders are hunching)
Me: Well?? Whats the deal?

Her: (she goes in her room of tricks and shuffles things around) I don't have enough. It's only 3 ounces and that won't be enough to do it properly. (then nothing)

Me: Okay, here's the deal. I made an appt with you. You forgot, didn't write it down, whateva. This was the day that was set aside for me to get my damn hair colored and I don't have time to reschedule or any such thing. Now I'm not sure what's going on with you but this is not a good week for me and I am ready for it to be over. Coloring my hair was part of the process so tell me what you need. Where do you get the color?

Her: In Laurel at Davidson's.

Me: (desperate now for real) Do you need me to go and get it???

Her: (hesitantly) I would have to call and see if they have it in stock (does she really want to do my hair??? Does she hate me?) I also have a 5:30 client coming in so I really can't go.

Me: Okay, go ahead and call. (standing now with lips poked out and a scowl on my face.)

Her: (On the phone) Blah blah blah, oh, you don't have it?...... Okay....

Me: (In my mind WTF??) Is there another store in the area?

Her: It's too far.

Me: I'll be the judge of that. Where is it?

Her: Rockville..... I have to call and see.

Me: Hell, I can get to Rockville. It's only 5pm (rush hour....beltway... hell.) What time do they close? Call them.

Her: (on the phone) Blah blah, oh you do. Okay what do you need ? Oh my card number and license. Oh... well I'm sending someone to get it. Can I give her the info?

Me: What's the address? Oh okay I know where that is. (snatch the card and jump in the car)

I'm high tailing it on the beltway and I'm cussin mad. I can't beleive that it has come to this. I'm a slave to the system. I am jacked all the way around. I had some fake out SL's that have been taken down and I can't even get this steel wool colored. I've reached a new low. I called my girlfrend back and told her to just go buy a gun and shoot me the next time she sees me and not to worry, just tell them at my funeral that I asked you to take me out of my misery. It's ok. You won't go to jail. That is truly the way I felt. I am 46 years old with all of the hair drama... What does this mean?

So, I pick up the stuff which btw, only costs $5.99 per tube... They then charge you $100 to apply it... but I guess that's the American way. I drive back around the beltway in traffic (it was moving thank God) to her shop. There is no one there in her chair..what happened to the 5:30 client. Did they ever exist? I've been played for sure.

Her: Come on and sit down. Thank you for doing that Wendi. Go ahead, cuss me out. I'm just not having a good day. I didn't write it down.

Me: Whatever, I'm not having a good WEEK, let alone day. Just do my hair please.

And the rest as they say, is history. Hair colored. Chit chat. She charged me $5. I paid $22 for 2 tubes of color and some other stuff that she had them set aside. I am glad it's over but I felt like you know what. The things we do in the name of hair.. or is it vanity? I think it's survival. When your hair is jacked, so are you. That's my story and I'm stickin to it.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

I'm Back and Have Plenty to Say/ Sisterloc Nitemare

Hello All,
It's been over almost 2 months and a lot has occured. I think my last post was in early Feb and at that time, my girlfriend's father was battling lung cancer and lost the battle on Feb. 7th. I stayed pretty close to her during that awful time and blogging went way down on the list of priorities. In addition to that, another girlfriend's mother was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer as well and it was completely unexpected and a shock to all. The doctors have given her 6 months to live and it was just a devastating blow. She is now caring for her mom full time and preparing for her life to end. It's just that simple. You live and then you die. Gives you much to ponder on, those of us who still take life for granted. The dynamics of my relationships with people have changed just over the course of these last 2 months and I am trying to cope with all of it.

I have a unique group of friends that I am very close to and as I stated when I was tagged, I am loyal almost to a fault. I try to treat people as I would like to be treated but that is not always healthy for me. I absorb other's grief and issues and I feel very deeply. As a result, I neglect the things in my life because I am so engrossed in everyone elses. Don't get me wrong, I am probably fulfilling some sick need I have to be needed by others. (that's another story) When I say neglect, I really mean that it gives me reason not to deal with my own issues that face me every day. Oh well, I figure when I go outta here, folk may just have some nice things to say......
I digress..

Now on to the drama at hand. It kills me to say this but I have taken down my sisterlocks. This occured on Thurs and Fri of last week. Long story, wanna hear it? Here it go:
You have seen pics of my friend Daena. Well, she started to have some real issues with her locs and wound up cutting them off and having them re-installed about 4 to 5 weeks ago. This was quite stressful and needless to say, very expensive and time consuming but I will tell you that the new set looks totally different and she is very happy now. Meanwhile, I had a banquet to attend on March 2 and I was chomping at the bit trying to figure out how to style my hair with the fabulous gown I purchased. I was happy about the gown because I am overweight and had finally found something that camaflouged my big-ness. I wanted an up-do. I go to a shop where I used to get my hair done with extensions and the loctician that styles there was exploring my hair and the first question she asked me was "who installed your locs?" I immediately cringed and became annoyed with the way she asked. I proceeded to tell her who and she went on to tell me what was wrong. Mind you, I had already figured that there were some issues but now they were being confirmed. My parts (or lack of parts) were not in a pattern. It was like hair had just been grabbed and a loc formed. The new growth was meshing together and it was hard for me to seperate the hair. I was also able to literally stick my finger in the middle of most of my locs because the hair was so loose. Now, to the naked eye, my hair looked fabulous but for one who was lurking thru it, the truth came out. Needless to say, I was sick.
My next step was to go to another sisterlock consultant to get a second opinion and lo and behold, she said the same thing. I did NOT have the true sisterlock pattern blah, blah, blah. I must interject that as I am writing this, i am finding it difficult to even write about it because it has truly been horrible. I really did like my hair and the way it looked but deep down, I knew it wasn't right and I had to face that fact and make a decision. I went to the original girl that did the initial consultation but couldn't get me in as fast as I wanted. (See Zaharah's blog titled "look before you leap") She gave me a couple of options. She told me she could fix the loose locs by doing a technique called a "pull down" but even with that I would still have jacked up parts or I could just take them out and start all over. Well, what a choice right?? I made an appt with her because my original consultant was recovering from surgery. I haven't had the chance to really speak with her about all of this. I had about 2 weeks to think about it. My appt was last Thurs at 9 am and when I got there I still had not made a decision. After an hour of going back and forth. I decided to take them out. I sat there for 8 hours and had several mini breakdowns. Daena came and held my hand as she had just gone thru it herself. After 8 long hours only about less than half were out and she used her tool to do it. I went home and from about 7p to 3 am only managed to get about 1/4 of it out. That was with the help of my girlfriend Regina aka "gettin hot" who graciously offered her services at about 10pm. She came over and really worked on my head and allowed me to rest for as she so bluntly put it " What's the point in having friends if they can't do sugar honey iced tea for ya" that was at abput 1am when I could barely raise my arm anymore and she suggested I just lay down and let her work. I love you for that Gina!!! You are the girl. I proceeded to go back to the consultant for another 5 hours on Friday and she managed to get it all out. Mind you, I paid her by the hour!!! You do the math.
I then went to my old hairdresser and she blew it out, combed it and trimmed or should I say cut it for you can imagine that I lost quite a bit of hair after not combing it for 3 months. Today would have been my 14 week mark. I still can't believe it. I am sitting here with an AFRO puff as I type and I am still trying to figure out what just happened.
End Result: I will be having them re-installed at the end of the week by the consultant's consultant who if flying in from Jamaica. Her name is Natalie and she is supposed to be really good. She did Daena's second set and it looks great, parts and all. I'm not sure how I feel. I think I am just numb and broke of course. I go for my "consultation" on Thurs and she starts on Friday. I will post pics sometime this week. This has truly been an experience and I just want it to be over.
I will say that I am still a diehard sisterloc girl and I am determined to be done correctly. I will not bash anyone, all I will say is truly do your homework and if you want it done right, stick with the certified consultants and make sure you SEE the work and look for the right things. I will talk more about that later.......