Brillo Hair - The Saga Continues
Trip Start Apr 14, 2006
10Trip End May 14, 2006
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I walked the streets of Rabat until I spied a pharmacie. D'accord. Two men and a woman stand behind a counter; nothing is out for looking and touching. I ask, in English, for conditioner. I pantomine the procedure, saying NOT shampoo, and one man responded in English that if I just walked on down the street a while, I would find it. I tried for more specific directions, but that was all he would/could give me. Maybe it's like a Mexican Yes: just an unwillingness to say I Don't Know, lady.
I left the pharmacie and as I approached the corner, I heard an insistent "Madame. Madame. Madame, s'il vous plait." The white smocked woman from the pharmacie was running after me to say in French "Just cross the street; you'll find what you are looking for over there.
Across the street was a beauty salon. Alors, it was tightly shuttered.
As I slogged back to the hotel, I spotted bottles and bottles of shampoo in the window of a dark, crowded corner store. Inside, I waited while the guy behind the counter carried on a lengthy personal conversation with another guy. It's an Arab country; some customs are not open to revision.
When finally he acknowledged my presence, I said in my best fractured French, "Excuse me for bothering you (a magic phrase in Paris; maybe it'll work here); I don't speak French (always a useful starter), but I would like some - uh - "after-shampoo."
He promptly produced a ladder, and climbed up to examine each of the dozens of bottles of hair product until Voila, he proudly handed down a bottle of Dove conditioner!
And do you know what conditioner is called in Morocco? Apres-Shampoo. Who knew?
With deep gratitude, I asked how muich; he replied vingt-neuf dirham. I handed him a fifty dirham bill, and he said - IN ENGLISH - "that's 29 out of fifty."
Some days you're the windshield; some days you're the bug. But this bug'll have soft hair tomorrow.