Natalie Nail Salon, Downtown Redwood City

Today, self decided to treat herself to a manicure/pedicure.  It’s been almost a week since she got home, she worked at the Writing Center Wednesday and Thursday (“You’re back!” her Thursday students said.  Oh, sweeties!  “Yes, I flew back from the Philippines just for you,” self said.  “Yay!  Prof. V is back!” they said).  Self always feels better poring over student papers if she knows her nails are well groomed.

The ladies at the nail salon are Vietnamese.  They whisper things to each other that self can’t understand.  Self thinks they’re probably saying something like:  “Look at this old bag!  So many wrinkles!”  But they continue to smile sweetly and soothe her dry skin with emollients.

Self loves looking at their pretty accessories.  The girl who did her manicure had a wide leather belt and the smallest suggestion of a tummy pouch.

“Guess my age!” she told self.

Self thought a moment.  No one in her twenties would ask such a question.  Self said, “30?”

The girl doing her pedicure said, “And guess mine, too!”

Self thought.  This was getting stressful.  “Uh —  28?”

The girl doing her manicure wanted to know why self thought the other girl was younger.

“Uh,” self thought.  “Because she has a rounder face?”

The manager of the salon came over to put a stop to this nonsense.  “That one is 35,” she said, pointing to the manicurist, “and that one is 34.”

Oh!  Self would never have thought.

Two blonde, very thin women, in super-skinny jeans, came in.  They were friends.  They started chatting about their kids.  Read the rest of this entry »

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