AnneMarie and Andrew

Annemarie and Andrew – Trekking Asia

After 8 weeks on the road both of us were in need of our hair cutting. I had been planning on waiting until Thailand when we were in Bangkok to get my hair cut, but my reason of “they get more western tourists and will be better with my hair”, sounded stupid. So I started keeping an eye out for barber shops. It took until our last day in Phnom Penh to walk past one because they won’t be in tourist areas. This was the first time I’d been to a barber shop in about 10 years. I stopped going when the price went above £5 and Annemarie has always cut it since then. The guy quoted $2 which seemed OK to me. Getting my hair cut was so easy, he understood a number 4 on the clippers. Then spent ages perfecting around the edges and did an excellent job. He had a flair with his hands too, a wave and a flick after cutting a piece of hair. That should do me for another couple of months. Annemarie’s hair was more complicated. We went into a hairdressers in the morning and asked and the guy responded with a gesture towards the shampoo bottle and a shake of the head regarding haircutting. Annemarie’s hair must have freaked him out (or he refused to cut it without washing it first)… Later in the day, on a small backstreet we saw a small opening into a tiny hairdressers. The woman was not put off and rose to the challenge, even though her English consisted of about 5 words (as many as we know in Khmer). She took an OK length off Annemarie’s hair and gestured she was done and was it OK. Annemarie needed it thinning but after a few minutes of gesturing she still couldn’t work out what Annemarie wanted. Then she pulled out a Samsung Galaxy Note 3 and rang her friend who spoke English and could act as a translator. After the first call the woman pointed to a bottle of shampoo, Annemarie started waving her arms. Ah, she gestures to rub Annemarie’s head, a massage perhaps? Annemarie waves her hands again to say no. Not perturbed she rings her friend for a second time. Annemarie explains again and this time the penny drops, you want your hair thinning. Our hairdresser pulls out an implement which Annemarie recognises, plenty of nodding and agreeing later we are on the same wavelength. Cut, cut, cut, cut, wow, that’s a lot of hair coming off. The result, Annemarie has the shortest hair she’s had for a long time (probably a bonus...

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