There are thousands (millions?) of idioms along the lines of the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence. It's easy to look at what others have or do and think theirs is better than our own. For me, it's all about hair. My hair is fine, not fine as in okay but fine as in thin, as in body-less, shapeless, as in wispy or when I need a haircut, stringy. Color-wise, I have received countless compliments over my lifetime. I'm a natural blond and well into my 40's my hair color has not darkened much. And I've had more than one friend run her fingers through my hair and tell others to feel it, it's so soft. And that should make me happy, the color and the softness, because we all like to receive compliments, don't we? But what I see is a flat and lifeless head of hair. Over the years I've more than one time broken the bank in attempt to get curl and body into my hair. I've paid for perms, root perms, and body waves, and have tried countless products that promise body and lift to my limp tresses. All for naught.
Even though I know better, even though I've had this hair my entire life and I've never won the battle, not once, I still occasionally succumb to my foolish dreams, thinking that maybe now my hair will somehow be different, maybe time has changed it somehow, or the vitamins I take, that something maybe (possibly, please) has changed. And so it was last Saturday. But rather than drain my entire bank account, my friend suggested that I let her curl my hair. And I did. She curled my hair in the morning, wrapping my hair around over 30 curlers all over my head. Then she stuck me under a dryer for an hour and then I wore the curlers all day until five minutes before I went out that evening.
When she unrolled the curlers out of my hair, I had curls. Curls! Me, with curls. I had curly hair!!! I walked across my living room and felt the delicate bounce of the curls and delighted in fact that my head was filled with curling spirals of curls. I felt tiny curl-bouncing breezes on my neck and I became a walking exclamation point. I was Shirley Temple on the good ship Lollipop, ready to tap dance my way into the curly haired hall of fame.
My plans for the evening were to attend a surprise party for my friend's father, held on the patio of a friend's restaurant. The patio of course is outside and this being Houston, the humidity was, well, it was typical for Houston which was 100%. My curls were in the fight for their curly little lives. For about 30 minutes after I arrived, they were winning. Slowly though, the curls drooped to waves and the heat and humidity pulled at them until they ultimately caved and fell. I grabbed my back-up plan hair clip from my purse and pulled the whole droopy mess to the back of my head and off my neck. My beloved curls had a lifetime of about 90 minutes.
Still, I'd like the world to know that for a brief period of time on Saturday May 9, 2009, I, Alison Groth, had won the battle and had a head full of curls.