Yesterday I hauled myself out to Raleigh, there, to get my roots done because I was rootin' out. If I were in a garden, I'd be one of the root vegetables. If I were having a good time, it'd be a rootin' tootin' one. I would be the home team, because someone has clearly been root-root-rooting for me.
You get my drift. I had some roots. Is what I had. If I were tea, I'd be Earl GREY.
So I knew it was gonna RAIN, I mean, I saw that on the weather thingie on my home page. It had the thunder and lightning picture up. So fine. It would rain while I got my rootage done. Who cares?
It was looking kind of ominous as I drove, and I can't remember who I told, "I like this kind of weather" but I do. I like drama queen weather. It was all close outside, you know what I mean? All damp and foreshadowy and darkish and "something's gonna happen!" like.
Anyway, I got to my hair appointment and settled in for the three hours it takes for my hairdresser to paint out the gray and prattle on endlessly. I never have to say a word while I'm there. I just lift my eyebrows occasionally or maybe murmur a "mmm!" every 45 minutes, and she talk talk talk talk talks. At one point, every time I see her, she says, "How did I get off on THAT tangent?
Really? Because all you ever DO is get off on tangents. And you wonder how you got off on that parTICular one?
Anyway, her salon is in an old brick building, with several other small salons in it, but hers faces the street. She took a break from her jabbering to say, "What time is it?"
"I don't know," I said, turning on my iPone. "Three-fifty or so?"
"Why is it dark out?" she said, heading toward the window.
You guys. It was PITCH BLACK outside. I mean, it had been raining, and thundering and lightning, and we had remarked on that, and in fact since she and I both grew up in the Midwest, we had even mentioned tornadoes, and you'll be surprised to hear she told a whole story about how tornadoes freak her out, because they freaked her dad out, who survived a horrific one where he actually grabbed and saved a naked twisting woman who flew past him in the air with all broken limbs.
She had gone on (!!) to say that as a child, her dad would shuttle them all to this concrete closet in the cellar and make her wear a motorcycle helmet any time there was the slightest tornado warning.
And now the sky was black. BLACK, folks.
Without hesitating, she turned from the window and ran to the next salon. I sat in the chair with dye on my head for awhile but finally looked in the hall.
Every other patron was surrounding a radio, looking stricken. They were listening to a TV station coming through the radio.
"We have lost power here at the TV station. We are coming to you from the basement of the studio. This is a life-or-death situation, listeners. Seek shelter immediately if you are in downtown Raleigh. Again, a tornado has touched down in downtown Raleigh."
"Are we in downtown Raleigh?" I asked. I had no idea. I just drive to the same salon every few months and then go home again.
Everybody shot me a terrible look as they strained to listen, which led me to glean we were so in downtown Raleigh.
"Trees are being uprooted," said the radio, as our lights flickered in the salon hallway. One of the other patrons screeched. "Roofs have been torn off. Again, SEEK SHELTER IMMEDIATELY. This storm is very dangerous."
It was very War of the Worlds, with the announcer in his basement and all.
My hairdresser was visibly shaking and the screecher was kind of crying into her wadded-up Kleenex.
"So, I kind of don't wish to be remembered this way," I said, my head slicked back with brown paint. "Is there, like, time to rinse me before we seek this shelter?"
I don't know why I wasn't scared but I totally wasn't. I guess because I have lived through 8,000 tornadoes in Michigan growing up, and also because we were in a brick building, and also just because I was probably in huge denial. But I felt like we were gonna be okay.
My hairdresser led me back to the sink. "Let's hurry and do this and get to the basement. I'm kind of freaking out right now."
"Well, if it's okay to leave the dye in, we can go to the basement now," I offered. See how generous I can be? I was totally willing to be all hideous dye-in-her-hair Pompeii woman, found with a stupid 'do for all time.
"No, they'll tell us if they hear anything else on the radio. Let's get this out of your hair."
I totally did not get the nice head massage that I usually get, which let me tell you was reflected in her tip.
By the time she washed and rinsed and neutralized and conditioned me, the other salon guy said the tornado had gone on to greener pastures, where by the way it ripped a whole roof off a Lowe's, and killed people, and did all sorts of damage. I mean, this was a serious tornado. It was not one of your happy-go-lucky tornadoes.
My poor hairdresser was still shaken and I told her she could call her family if she wanted but she seemed to just want to keep working on my stupid hair. "What style are we going for with your blow-dry?" she asked.
"Let's go for kind of a wind-swept look," I said.
Really, she failed to appreciate me all afternoon. I had some good material, there, and I am hoping that in the cool light of reason she can look back and enjoy my funny funny self.
The drive home was not pretty, as I had to keep swerving past downed trees and huge branches and the occasional hailstorm that passed through.
But my roots look fabulous.