And, nekkid from the waist down now, knees akimbo I’m exposed and vulnerable.
“Rachana, how did you happen to come here from Nepal?“ I know this factoid from Jessamyn.
“Both my husband and I were lucky enough to win the lottery,” she said. “We wanted a better life for our children in America.”
In the best of circumstances I like to talk. I like to ask questions. Any question of anybody. Once, forced to pick several adjectives to describe me, Jeff could only be sure of one, “inquisitive”. And when I’m nervous, that talking can sometimes boil over, make a mess of things.
With the clippers in Rachana’s hand coming closer and closer , there is lots to ask.
Rachana and her husband have two children. There are immigration allotments for green cards from different countries. Both she and her husband, an electrical engineer, were lucky enough to get numbers allowing them to come and work here legally. “But his number was better than mine, so it was better for me to come under his number also.”
She’s clipping now. I remember the ideal length for short curlies is .25 inch or maybe a bit more, and she’s clipping to meet that. As at the dentist’s office I’m looking at the ceiling, the walls, anywhere except where the action is, while trying to still formulate sentences, and to take in the ones coming at me, while hearing the whir, feeling the vibration.
How sharp is that thing? Can it cut? There’s precious tissues right THERE. There. THERE…
Jessamyn’s wisdom comes back, “I always try to remember that they’ve seen worse.” I look at the ceiling, at the little curtain, the exit door, but try super-triple hard to keep my eyes away from the table that holds the hot wax.