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The Forty year Journey by Snipped Sam
I study my look in the mirror, yes, my hair is ready to be cut, yes, I do want to see this barber again, yes, I really do want to go through with this. The year is 2016 and I am 56 years old, I had recently liked and joined a Facebook page for my old hometown where I lived in 1970s. Recently I had seen a tread about a specific barber who was still operating in the town, surely it couldn't be, it seems it could, a quick search on the internet and I have the telephone number of the barbers. My heart racing a little, I dial the number and a very friendly voice answers the telephone. I enquire as to the opening times in the next couple of weeks, and it appears he is going to be there next week when I am visiting the area on both a business and pleasure trip. Then I ask the question …was he a barber at Squires in the 70s, oh yes he replies I started there in 1968.He must now be somewhere in his early 70s, and I am picturing him as he was then, tall and slim with short mid brown hair and very neat beard. A man who I hated because he always cut my hair really short who even when I was fifteen spoke to me as if I was a little boy. There were three barbers there, and if he was cutting my hair it was always really short, and sometimes I had to go with my dad to the barbers and he always liked Philip to cut my hair.
So off I set to the barbers, I have an excellent suntan at the moment, and I am looking good in my Chino shorts and polo shirt, I find his premises very easily, he is now a sole barber, I enter the shop and I see a distinguished man in his 70s he is cutting the hair of a man a little older than me. I take a seat, I pick up a magazine and keep looking up at Philip, I remember sitting waiting my turn all those years ago hoping for one of the other barbers to be finished first, when it was my turn next. Sometimes I would be lucky and it would be Peter or Mike cutting my hair, still a bit on the short side but never as short as he cut it. He would sometimes look at me and click his fingers when I had to have him cut my hair, when I got to his chair and sat down he would usually make a comment like "not your day is it? "or "I think it's about time you had a short back and sides”.
The time gently passes as I glance at the magazine and reflect on my teens and now the man is off the barber's chair and has paid for his haircut and leaves. Philip looks over at me and smiles, and no click of the fingers,
"ready when you are Sir "
"thank you” I reply as I sit in the chair.
Now I am caped and he is combing my hair.
"how are you today Sir?”
"very good thanks, how are you?” I reply, thinking how much he has mellowed, that arrogant if very handsome man I remember seems to have turned into a gentleman.
"fine sir, thanks...so what can I do for you today?”
"I was thinking of perhaps just a tidy up when I came in "
"not so sure now sir”
"you were my barber over forty years ago and you used to cut my hair really short in those days "
"no surprise there sir, I have been told that I was a bit of a demon barber in those days”
"you liked using your clippers, I remember that”
"I guess you didn't like my haircuts too much then sir”
"not really, but having seen you were still here, I wanted to come back "
"that's good to hear and perhaps you are a little unsure what you would like to have done now”
"I think maybe I am, but I think this is the first time I have been given a choice by you "
"you can always leave it up to me sir. I just thinking a very short crew cut would suit you”
"you always did like your clippers”
"a crew cut sir?”
"yes, a crew cut sir "I replied
He selected his clippers and placed the guard on them, he placed his hand on the back of my head and bent it forward and I hear the click of the switch and then the loud buzz, the cold metal touches the back of my neck, the expert is at work once again.