When you move to a new place, you have to find new go-to locations for all kind of stuff. It starts with a new grocery store, vet for your pets, family doctor, pharmacy, apparel stores, car dealer, auto repair store, home repair supplier, hair dresser, restaurants, bars, gym, etc. … and ends with a new spa.
Luckily, when we arrived in Fairbanks, a colleague took me under her wing. She gave me a list of recommended places including churches of all kind of religious believe. She even told me which transfer station is the closed to where we had rented the house. While she was listing the locations and how to get there, she wrote down the telephone numbers and addresses of service providers off the top of her head. Her suggestions even included a gutter cleaner, a tree cutter, a dog poop collector (!) for spring cleanup of a dog yard, a chimney cleaner, furnace repairman, oil exchange pit stop, the best cross-country loops, the cheapest dog sled ride, and the symphony and chamber orchestra.
I didn’t think much about her writing this list, as I had to start somewhere anyhow. Thus, I didn’t mind that she recommended the clinic where one of her sons has been working as a doctor (I hadn’t to go to him, but could chose someone else.). I also did not think about what her recommendations would mean regarding a hairdresser (everyone of my female colleagues including her had the same hairdresser!). The only service she didn’t give a suggestion for was a pedicure, but I didn’t realize it when she created the list. I was so overwhelmed, but happy she had given me a list to start building my network. <3
Well, the day came when I looked at her list for a pedicure. And of course, I didn’t think much about not seeing a spa listed either. Wouldn’t it be natural that you miss a thing or two when creating a Best Service List off links? Thus, I picked up the yellow pages, called the closest spa, got an appointment for 30 minutes later (!), jumped into the car, and off to my first pedicure in Alaska.
I arrived at the spa. There were many cars in the parking lot which I assessed as a good sign. I let a woman in a camo jacket back out, and then took her parking spot. I walked thru the huge nearly full parking lot to the front door. A bell rang, when I opened it. There was an Arctic entrance so I had to pass another door that led to a large illuminated open space where several well-groomed hairdresser where working on their middle-class clients.
The room smelled like a mix of perfume and hydrogen peroxide, well like a hair saloon smells. The entrance to this beauty space was partly blocked by a huge counter with shelves full of nail polish in a rainbow of colors, eye shadow, creams, and hair shampoos. An old lady behind the counter greeted me friendly and I checked in.
A young woman with a beautiful haircut, nice pedicure and manicure in a long tulle skirt led me to one of many back rooms. There were two elevated seats looking like a throne on the red carpet covered blocks they were mounted on. In front of each of them was a sink for footbaths. Along the wall were bottles with various oils and jars with all kinds of foot scrubs and bathing salts. The room smelled like a mix of orange and jasmine flowers with some hints of ocean and pine forest. relaxing music was playing in the background. The ambient feeling of the room was very cozy.
The woman assigned me one of the seats. I walked up the couple of stair steps to reach the seat and sat down. I rolled up my jeans, took off my shoes and socks while she prepared a warm bubble bath with the products of my choice.
Another woman of my age came in and took the other seat. She wore a mixed print outfit. She seemed to be a regular as she asked her beauty person about her son’s wedding and whether she had found a perfect formal mother-of-the-groom dress.
While I was relaxing with my feet in the warm solution, the young woman rolled in a small shelf with all kinds of beauty tools, creams, towels of all sizes. On the lowest shelf was a Black & Decker tools power drill with an attached grinder.
Looking at the electric tool I had to smile. Black & Decker was my Dad’s favorite brand for tools and I saw one here in Alaska! I also was amused that a repairman obviously had put it on the lowest shelf and forgotten about it or was now missing it. 🙂
Oh (wo)man was I wrong! After cutting and filing my toe nails, the young woman took Black & Decker to remove callus! The other woman watched on as if it were the normalest thing on Earth to remove callus with an electric drill tool with an attached grinding wheel covered with abrasive paper!I just read a totally funny story about a pedicure! Read it! Click To Tweet
How would you have reacted when seeing this? What would you have done in my place?
Would you go to that spa again? I am curious.
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Photos of me: G. Kramm
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