When I was a little girl, my aunts and uncles would visit us in Cranbrook often. “Auntie Judi” came once a year and would take over my bedroom and I was happy to give it to her. Judi was my favorite aunt – no, that’s not quite correct – she was the one who seemed to get me and she lead the life that I thought I wanted to lead. She was single, laughed alot, had no children, travelled, and gave me attention.
What I remember most about those visits is hovering at the closed bedroom door wishing she didn’t always sleep in sooooo late and the painting of my fingernails. Mom didn’t paint her nails when I was a kid – well, at least that I remember. So when Judi came flying into town with her brightly coloured nail pots, I knew that I could be pretty and fashionable just like her. And she just seemed to ignore my pudgy fat fingers. Invariably, almost immediately upon completing my nails, I would smudge or chip them because I wasn’t a gentle or patient child.
Not much has changed in that regard – I still am restless and active. Mom passed on to me working hands and working habits. I can count the number of manicures I have ever had on one hand – pun intended – because it is pretty costly for something that last about 24 hours for me. The wish be pretty and fashionable may have been created by society views girls and women – but it is still there.
When I was a teenager, Mom started getting gel nails which had its drawbacks. First off, I did not have the income to support the maintenance cost. Well. .. I guess that is the reason because as a teenager I didn’t really care about long-term consequences like nail bed health. (and really does anyone stay up worrying about that?). But the filling requirements, the worry of infection, the damage to natural nails. . . it wasn’t something that seemed like a good idea even when I got income to pay for it.
But a brilliant person – who probably could have worked on the cure for cancer – invested gel polish. This being a cross between regular polish and fake nails. Essentially, it is nail polish that is strong and durable. It is painted on your regular nails but set with a UV light. ( I wonder how that ages your hands. . . Hmmmm)
As I explored downtown Vancouver Saturday morning, I ended up in Yaletown. That is where all the beauty bars are kept I think. And I found exactly what I was looking for – a small salon tucked into a Galleria with fading aging pictures in the window (I don’t want to pay for fancy storefronts). They could take me right now.
October 20th, 2012 Extra-Ordinary: Pretty and Fashionable. That’s me.