Sunday, April 11, 2010

Where it All Happens....

Nipped into my local spa/nail bar over the weekend. It’s one small luxury that I’ll struggle to give up when I leave Dubai – a mani/pedi for the bargain price of about 16 quid. I’d never have indulged in such a treat back home as they would have cost me at least double that.

Anyway as I’ve been going there for the last two years, it’s always a fun session. The girls are super friendly – they’ve heard about break-ups, bereavement, and even examined my injuries after the car crash.

This weekend was no exception, but there were a few differences. The usual greeting of “Hi Ma’am” was accompanied by “Ma’am, you look nice today” (I usually stagger through the door after a 12 hour working day: looking nice isn’t really a compliment you can pay me by that stage. As it was the weekend I’d had a chance to at least apply a full face of make-up.)

After a bit of giggling and chatting in Filipino, the girls felt brave enough to ask me a question: “Ma’am, have you got a date?” Cue much more giggling. This stopped just as soon as I responded with a “no”.

We then had an amusing exchange where I was grilled about why I don’t have a husband (this isn’t the first time and I’ve heard them do it to many, many customers before). It’s not surprising really - at my ripe old age I’d probably be cast out of the community in the Philippines for not having a husband or children, and many of the girls are working to support just that set-up back home.

Finally after debating the subject in broken English I decided on one phrase which summed the situation up: “The problem with husbands” I declared, “Is that they are extremely expensive.”

Despite the differing grasps on the English language this was met with much agreement from everyone in the salon. Including the (married) woman sat in the chair next to me. After that we sat in an amiable silence for the rest of the session.

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