How Sarah Got Her Groove Back.

So, Matt and I finally made it back to New York.  We are settling in quite nicely, and I have wasted no time getting back into the swing of things.  Like, work for instance.  We only got back last Friday, but I couldn’t wait to get back to my job.

As some of you know, before Matt and I moved to Grenada so he could attend medical school, I worked as a hair stylist in the city for years.  One of the hardest things about living overseas was not being able to work.  Because jobs are scarce in Grenada, Americans are not allowed to legally work, so I was left to my own devices, which usually included me doing hair cuts in our teeny apartment for other medical students.  It actually became a pretty lucrative business, if you ask me, and I managed to keep up my skills as best I could while away for two years.

Now that I’m back in New York, New York, the city that never sleeps, the place where dreams are made…and broken, I was eager to get my groove back, and start wielding those scissors (not violently, just cutting hair) again.

New York, New York...Ain't nowhere else like it...

So, I kind of thought I was going to go back to my old routine, without skipping a beat…you know just pop back in where I left off?  But I must confess, I skipped a beat, or a few beats for that matter.

The night before my first day back at work, I couldn’t sleep.  I tossed and turned, having nightmares of over sleeping and being late for work.  When my alarm finally went off at 5:30 AM I felt like I hadn’t slept a wink.  I got out of bed like a zombie, hurried up and got ready, and managed to down a cup of coffee before Matt drove me to the train that takes me into the city for work.

While buying my ticket for the train, I fumbled, as three people impatiently waited behind me for the train that was to arrive in three minutes.  Suddenly I felt like the “out of towners” that I used to get so fed up with back when I was in my New York groove.  Back then, if someone was in front of me that didn’t know exactly what to select of the touch screen to buy their ticket, I would mumble something under my breath to hurry them along, and then grunt something like, “Tourists,” as I scoffed away, coffee in hand, scarf thrown around my neck.  P.S.  I am sorry to any of the people I did this, too.  Just know that I got pay back yesterday, and I totally deserved it.

When I got off the train, I walked up to the little coffee stand on the street, where I used to order my uj, a small coffee with vanilla coffee cream.

Look at all those delish treats...

However, much to my chagrin, the coffee man who used to know me so well, didn’t so much as blink my way.  I was really hoping for one of those custard-filled donuts that he used to so kindly give me for free back when I was a New Yorker, but yesterday I got nothin.’

When I walked into work, I immediately saw some of my peeps, and things quickly started to turn around.  It was so good to see some of my old friends, and everyone was so welcoming.  Before I knew it, I had a client, and it was time to start doing some hair.

Let me just tell you, I only had four clients yesterday, but by the time I was finished I felt like I had run a marathon (not that I would know what that feels like).  I was so absolutely exhausted, that it took me all night, and all of today to recover.  The pure exhaustion took me back to the days when I was first doing hair in New York, and how I would go home at night and just crash, sometimes still in my work clothes.

While riding the train home yesterday, I began to marvel at the stamina I used to have. Around the time I left for Grenada, I could work non-stop for nine hours, and not feel a thing.  I could work a busy Saturday, then go home and go out to dinner with Matt, watch a movie, then go shopping, etc, etc.  I was like a fine-tuned machine!  I think it’s safe to say, I wasn’t a machine yesterday.  I was more like a car that needed some jumper cables.

Despite my elderly-esque exhaustion today, I really feel like I got my groove back yesterday.  I survived my first day back to work, after not working for two whole years, and I didn’t get eaten alive.

And any real New Yorker knows that’s an accomplishment.

~The End.

Photos by elizabeth-aboutnewyork.blogspot.com and pinterest.

A Somewhat Hairy Sitch…

So, today I decided to give myself a haircut.  Why?  I really couldn’t tell ya.  Maybe it was boredom?  Living in the Caribbean I know sounds super exotic, right?  Well, that was kind of rude of me to assume, maybe it sounds like a H-E-double L- hole to you…either way or however you view it, I guarantee this place is not what it seems to you…ugh, there I go again with the assuming…I guess what I am trying to say is, living in Grenada is not always that exciting, and sometimes you have to make your own fun, which is precisely what I did today. (<–If by fun you mean almost having a breakdown because you got half-way through cutting your own hair, only to realize that there was a very very good chance you were about to ruin your hair, then it was tons and tons of fun! WOOO!  Can you tell I’m lying?  I am totally lying to you right now.

I woke up this morning feeling like, UGH.  Do you ever wake up feeling like that?  I just looked in the mirror and my hair looked so flat and tepid, that I thought my hair could use a little one-two, and that was it.  The idea to cut my own hair was sprung…(Btdubs, I have cut my own hair before, but just a lil’ trim and everything turned out just fine, so what was the harm?)…I know you’re probably wondering why there aren’t places in Grenada where I can go and have my hair cut, and I will answer that question by saying, there are places, but I have heard horror stories about them chopping off people’s hair and such.  So, therefore I wouldn’t even consider entrusting my tresses into those wretched scenes. On a side note, it is me who actually is the resident hair stylist on campus, and I do cuts out of our apartment all the time, because the students don’t want to have their huuuur cut by any of those cray cray hair places either…(<–Can you tell I am trying my best to justify to you all that I am not a high maintenance loony person?)  P.S. They have been known to cut women’s layers with a clipper. (<–Yep, stillllll justifying…) Anyway, so I thought my idea was a brilliant one, and I even told me husband about my plan, and he said, and I quote, “Oh Lordy, I’m gettin’ out of here.”  Because he knows where this little endeavor was about to take me, and even he could see that it was taking me on sure shot ride straight to where the crazy people reside.

So, I got my little spot all set up, in our bathroom, which is where all the magic was going to happen.  I had my handheld mirror, combs, water bottle, mat on the floor (as to not make a mess), and I was ready to go.  I wet my hair down, sectioned it out with clips, and everything was right with the universe.  About half-way through trimming the ends of my hair, I started to get cocky, and my mind raced in a bit of a mania, and I thought to myself, “I am already cutting my hair…and the wedding is over now…so why not just go for it, and really give myself a change.”  Yes, anyone can see where this story is headed.

P.S.  This is where pictures of the wondrous experience would be, but I can’t even post them because you would all see the photographs of a woman on the verge of hysterical histrionics.  ‘Nuff said.

So, I proceeded to take more and more off the layers, until I got to a point, of what some might call, no return…kind of a fork in the road…a dead end, if you will…but I had to keep going, I mean, I had no choice.  I had over ambitiously cut way too much off the layers at the back of my head, so when I got to the front of my hair, I freaked.  When I saw that in order for my hair to be even all the way throughout, that I needed to take off…well, a lot of hair (I don’t even want to tell you inches because it will make you shudder), I had somewhat of a nervous breakdown.

Matt came into the bathroom and attempted to defuse the situation.  He said, “Would it help if I took some pictures?” (He was only trying to help, because I had, had a tripod set up to take some shots while I was doing what was supposed to be a fun little project…)  But it wasn’t the picture-taking situation that had me worked up, it was this dreadful haircut I was knee-deep in that had me cursing the world.  I didn’t even need to answer, because I think he could see the crazy look in my eye, that there would be no pictures today.  No, none at all.  It was not a picture perfect kind of day.

I managed to walk away for a few minutes to compose my thoughts, eat some candy, read my blog comments, twiddle my thumbs, before going back into the place that had become my own little personal hell…aka, the scene of the crime.  So, I gathered my thoughts, took a deep breath, picked my sanity off the floor, and began to cut.

Somehow, someway I managed to finish without completely losing my marbles.  I just calmly went through the rest of my hair section by section, until I finished.  When all was said and done, it actually looked…good.  I have to say, I was actually pleasantly surprised with the results…which leads me to believe that maybe I was just being crazy, and it really wasn’t that bad all along…Perhaps I just thought it was…

All I know is, whatever the case may have been, I will never…and I repeat…never…cut my own hair again.  I prom.

P.S. Remind me that I made this vow 6 months from now…

Part 3: Stories from the Good Ship Lollipop…The End…

Continued from Part 2…

Part 3:

I went back to see That Old Wench one last time, and I hoped we would be besties.  False.  I just hoped she wasn’t going to make me cry, but being as though I already had my “cry face” on (aka; The cry-face is the face you get when you are trying not to cry, but everyone else can totally tell you’re going to bust), I had a bad feeling this was not going to end well, and it didn’t.  The last thing That Old Wench told me right before I left to go to the biggest audition of my life was…get ready for it, get ready…ready?

She said, “You’re not going to get this part.”  She just plainly looked at me like I was a piece of dust on her coffee table, and the words seemed to effortlessly spill from her mouth. That is literally all she said.  I sat there on that same dusty couch I had sat on for the last two days, and I was stunned.  Never one to be at a loss for words, I was completely dumbfounded, but I wasn’t sunk yet. I wasn’t about to cry (even though I had my cry face on), because That Old Wench was not going to get one tear out of me.  That Old Wench can go blow.

I arrived at the audition nervous, but more excited than anything else.  I put the words of That Old Wench in the back of my mind, and I was feeling good.  As I walked through the doors I was not ready for what I was about to see.  I saw at least ten little heads all ‘a chop complete with bangs and bobs and in the Mary Lennox hairdo.  Oh my God, I think I just hallucinated…Was this really happening?? Why, yes, yes it was.  It was my worst nightmare realized, and coming to me in the form of bangs and bobs.  Why me?  Why meeeeeee??? (<–FYI; To this day, I still can’t stand to see this haircut.  When Katie Holmes got the bangs and bob, I had to look away for at least six months.) I don’t know if it was That Old Wench’s words coming back with full force, or if it was that I was psyched out by all the little bangs and bobs invading my personal space, but I began to feel really discomBOBulated <–No pun intended.

I waited outside the audition room for my turn, and I suddenly loathed my dumb beret(<–FYI; To this day I can’t listen to Raspberry Beret by Prince.) Just when the bangs and bobs were about to undoubtedly drive me straight over the edge…

My name was called by a girl with a clipboard, “Sarah Barkoff?”

“Yes, here,” I said and got up and went into the audition room.

I was nervous walking into the room, that had at least eight people sitting at a long table staring at me wondering if I was their Mary Lennox, but escaping the bangs and bob room from hell, seemed to do wonders for my nerve.  I was asked to do my first song, and then go straight into the dialogue, which I did, and I felt like everything was falling into place. It wasn’t until the beginning of my second song, that the audition began to take a turn for the worse.

The woman in the first seat all the way to the left said, “Okay Sarah, now can you do the same line, but do it a little more perturbed?”  She said this as she talked to me like a baby.  Awkward.

Okay lady, WHAT THE EF does ‘perturbed’ mean??!! I’m 11, you crazy broad(<–inner thoughts and feelings…)  I started to panic, and think about That Old Wench’s last words to me.  And for some odd reason, I don’t know why, but all I could think of was the little blond girl from the picture in That Old Wench’s apartment, with her cool jean jacket on.  I thought to myself, “Laura Bell Bundy wouldn’t blow this audition…Laura would never show up in a dumb beret, she would have gotten the bangs and bob…Laura. Would. Get. The. Part.”  Except little did I know, Laura wouldn’t have gotten the part, because the part wasn’t for a blondie, it was for a brunette-ie.  Oh, little did my 11-year-old self know…

“Okay, sure,” I said as I proceeded to do the same line the exact same way, because I had no clue what the ef ‘perturbed’ meant.

“Okay Sarah, thank you very much.  We will let your agent know when we have made a decision,” said the woman in the first seat all the way to the left.

For those of you who don’t know, those exact words, nothing more, nothing less, is basically the kiss of death in showbiz.  I knew it was over the second I heard the dreadful, “Okay Sarah, thank you very much.”  Usually if there is a chance of sealing the deal, there will be more dialogue between the auditionee and auditioner, and inquiring about the logistics of accepting the role, but really at 11-years-old, I figured as much because they never asked to speak with my mom or dad afterward.  So, I knew.

And I was right.  I didn’t get the part.  The casting people told my agent that they actually really did like me, but that I looked too mature for the role, and they wanted a little girl who had a younger look, so all in all, I just wasn’t right for the part. (P.S. Thank God I didn’t cut my hair!  Thanks Ma!)  When all was said and done, I went home to Michigan, and did not go back to New York City for any auditions for the next 8 years.  However, my dream of playing  Mary Lennox in The Secret Garden did come true about a year later.  I played the part in a professional production of the show in Ann Arbor, MI, and the best part was, I still got to be a normal kid and stay put in Michigan with my family.  I still think leaving New York when I did was the best decision I ever made, and I am happy that I was able to have all the normal experiences a kid should have, and that I had a chance to just blend in with my peers for while.

The End…Just kidding!  Are you crazy?  I’m not about to not give you a follow-up on everyone involved in this story!

First things first…

That Old Wench:  Well, apparently That Old Wench is alive and kicking (I googled her), and likely still making other little girls cry.  I would tell you her name, and show you a picture of her, but then I would have to kill you.  Just kidding, but I don’t want to get sued for slander!  Hint:  I will tell you that she recently wrote a way famous screenplay, with a way famous lead actress in the lead role, based on a popular book and blog. 

Next we have…Laura Bell Bundy…

Remember this classy little broad?

Laura Bell Bundy is now a way famous country singer, so apparently I had an eye for talent. P.S. Love me some big hair, too, Laura.

And then there's me. I'm not famous or anything, but I'm happy. Hooray.

Photos courtesy of candistar.com and laurabellbundyfans.com