How far you would drive for a great AFFORDABLE haircut? Would you drive 2.5 hours? I confess, I did exactly that. Included in that haircut was color to banish the gray, a few caramel-colored highlights that my sister says is needed to lighten up the face, and since I had to wait for the color anyway, I went ahead and had my eyebrows waxed. So there, I drove 2.5 hours up and over the mountains (round-trip) from Asheville, NC to Unicoi, TN for a day of high maintenance. On the way, I picked up my friend Betty in Marshall where we had breakfast at Zuma’s before heading out to the Dragonfly Salon.
“Why do it?, my husband asks. “You’re crazy. You mean to tell me there is not one hairdresser in all of Asheville who can cut your hair?” Of course there is, but I don’t feel like paying two hundred dollars every time I need a cut and color. You see, I was spoiled by Mari, who is not only a great haircutter and colorist, but does it very affordably.
When Mari first moved to Tennessee I told myself I would never drive to another state for a haircut. That was before I spent two years in search of the perfect hairdresser, stopping women everywhere asking them who cut their hair and how much they paid. I had no shame. I want to tell you, no one has ever accused me of being cheap. I completely support stylists getting as much as they can for their haircuts. It’s just that I can’t pay those big city prices, and let’s not forget that the economy tanked and without any cost of living increase over the last three years, my salary has been going down instead of up. And yes, I’m happy to have a job – no whining here.
So, after considerable introspection, I embarked on the Big C (the big compromise). I opted to go local and accept a mediocre haircut and color at half the price. That lasted for two years until my mediocre stylist turned what was supposed to be brown hair (with caramel highlights) totally blond. I screamed. I had no one to blame but myself. Why did I tell her to leave her lazy husband who hadn’t worked for two years and forced her to pay the mortgage, the loan for his houseboat, and his kid’s vacation at Disneyland? No doubt, my blond hair was punishment for giving out free advice when not asked!
So that’s how I ended up driving 2.5 hours to Tennessee with my good friend Betty, only to return to North Carolina at 4:00 in the afternoon, nicely coiffed and colored. And in case you’re wondering why I just don’t go gray, let me tell you, if the economy gets any worse, I will have to because I won’t be able to afford the gas.