Dreads: Day 1

Posted in Hair Stories by Ashley Franklin on October 6, 2009
Tags: , , , , , ,


What I thought was going to be my 8:30 appointment turned into 10am. I guess that’s the perils of a homie hookup that comes to your door. At any rate, I’d been up since well before 7, extra excited. By 8:15 I’d showered and washed my hair. I thought I was pushing my 8:30 deadline when I finished blow drying my hair at 8:25. At 9am, I text my aunt asking her where her friend was, and she said that she was waiting for her. This was news to me because I didn’t know that my aunt was coming too. This now seemed like a family project.

The Introduction

At 9:20, I saw my aunt’s little black car and a periwinkle van pull in front of the house. Behold…”Pam”. Now I know that there’s no typical hair stylist look, but Pam still threw me for a loop. On this brisk Monday morning, she walked up the winding walkway. Her patch of hair flowing in the wind. Yes, her whole head was shaved except for one sleek patch. She was wearing a floral print summer dress over ripped blue jeans, and bronze flip flops that matched her sweater. I even remember the color of her nail polish. It looked like something Crayola would call Jazzy Jack-o-lantern or Electric Pumpkin Patch. Hmmm…she was wearing a scarf, but I can’t remember what it looked like. It must have been too ordinary to command attention or recollection.


What did we need? Locking gel and hair clips. Did we have them? NO! We took a trip to the hair store and after much searching, I got some $20 locking gel. Yes, $20. It hurt a little bit, I’m not going to lie. The exact name of it escapes me, and I’m just too lazy to get up and search for it. Though for twenty bucks, I should probably know exactly where it is.

It was around 10am when we finally started. We sat in the kitchen, I in a chair, she behind me on a stool. As she took the comb, parted the first section, and did the first twist, I thought one thing: I hope I know what I’m getting myself into.


I have a big head. I even have the audacity to have thick hair. After sitting for two hours, Pam was still doing the back of my head. I was trying my best to resist my childlike urges to get up and runaway, but my shaky leg gave me away. I hate sitting still. Pam said she would be done by 2:30. She wasn’t. The time didn’t go by terribly slow. Pam’s a talker. She told me about her kids, school, religious walk, and her own hair story. She too had locks at one point.


Several deadlines later, Pam finished a little before 5. I only ran away a couple of times, and they were legitimate. She talked for the majority of the time she was here. The most important thing that she said was: “Growing locks is a humbling experience.” Maybe it’s because they look really weird in the beginning or because you’re putting all your faith into your hair, hoping that it will do what it is supposed to do, but I guess I will soon see how true this statement is.


2 Responses to 'Dreads: Day 1'

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  1. Kate Reighard said,

    I miss you AND your stubborn hair!!!!!! Much love!

  2. Tricia Ferdinand said,

    Ooh! I love the storytelling. Clearly I’m visiting more often 🙂

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