Thursday, 10 August 2017
Something weird happened to me today. Weird is the exact word for it. That, or possibly perplexing. Either way, I felt very disturbed at the time.
I went out in the garden, and there, in the corner by the pear tree was a panther. He was sitting there, on alert, ready to pounce on its prey.
I couldn't believe my eyes. So I tried believing my ears instead and listened. Nothing. Not a sound. It just sat there staring at me staring at him.
It could have been a black cat. Everything seems to be bigger than it really is since I wore these new glasses. The optician may have given me someone else's prescription by mistake. When I left his shop I could not find my red Mini car. Where I parked it there was a huge red Jeep instead. So I walked home.
Have you noticed how everyone seems to be putting a lot of weight on lately. I was like a dwarf amongst giants.
These glasses certainly make everything appear huge. I'll loan them to my wife some evening.
This is not the first time my optician made such silly mistakes. Especially since I only went there for a haircut. The last time I visited him he trimmed my beard and moustache too short.
He told me once that he is totally self-taught. He does not believe in all this wasting time at college and university to get a degree and fancy letters after your name. Anyone can be a hairdresser, he said. All you need is practice and he got all the practice he needs when he was a gardener cutting trees and hedges and mowing the lawn.
Whilst I don't mind having my eyes checked by him, I would certainly not have him shave me with one of those very sharp razor blades. Not again. Not after the last time.
I remember staying very still and very afraid as the sharp blade reached my throat. Then, from the corner of my eye, I saw an ear on the floor amongst all the cut hairs.
I said, "Look here ... there's an ear down here on the floor. Whose ear is it here?"
He replied, "Touch it. If it is still warm it is yours!"
Another thing about him, like all hairdressers, they like to talk whilst cutting your hair and always ask if you've been on holiday or are going on holiday. What is it about hairdressers and holidays?
On another occasion, after testing my eyes and then cutting my hair he asked, "Have you been on holiday?"
"Oh yes ..." I replied, "I have been to Rome. I went to the Vatican and met the Pope. I had an audience with the Pope and met him in his Pope Room!"
Being a Catholic, my optician and hairdresser was most impressed. He wanted to learn more.
"Really?" he asked, "You met His Popiness the Pope? What did he say to you?"
I hesitated and then said, "He said, tell me who cut your hair so badly and I'll get your money back!"
My hairdresser stopped sharpening his razor for a moment and then asked, "And did you tell him?"
In his job one has to be very discreet and not repeat what one hears or learns about one's clients. It's like going to confession to a priest. What one hears one does not repeat.
I remember years ago, when I was young and single, whilst he was cutting my hair, I told him about an indiscretion with a young lady.
"Was it Margaret who works at the butcher's?" he asked.
I said, "No!"
"Oh ... it must have been Jennifer then. She works at the supermarket down the road."
Again, he got it wrong.
"If not Jennifer, then it must have been Dorothy. She too is one for the boys!" he declared with a smile.
"Definitely not." I said.
After a few more wrong guesses, he still did not know who my girl-friend was. But I got some useful contacts I did not know about.
I wonder whose glasses he gave me by mistake.