The Bridal Makeover To preserve our Indian-ness, I was never allowed to cut my hair short.

watch I had thick, long, straight, black hair that lived on my head, but belonged to my Mum and my Aunts. It did whatever they wanted it to, on a time-table of its own. It was oiled and washed and combed and sprung like 2 braided antennae, from the top of my head, just above my ears. Never cut, at some point, it fell down to the back of my knees.

site de rencontre ado celibataire belgique Now that I am Bald and Bootiful, how I wish, I could have, what I once thought, was the bane of my life , back on my head.

rencontres 01 I had never ever been to a Beauty Parlour in all my life, till the morning of my wedding. After the Communion Service for the family at Christ Church, I was packed off to a Chinese Beauty Parlour with Mrs. Beebee, the Organist at Christ Church. She dropped me off at the Parlour and drove back, to complete the Flower arrangements in the Church, saying that she would pick me up when I was ready.

Best companies to trade stock I had no idea what I was in for. The girls in the Parlour could not believe their ears, when I told them that I had never been to a Beauty Parlour before. They could not believe that I had never had a facial, a manicure, a pedicure, a bleach, wax or threading done. They could not believe that a young doctor at 25 , could be so unsophisticated. Unbelievable……they exclaimed

see Shaking their heads, they led me to a chair facing a huge mirror and took my glasses off. Without my glasses, I cannot see a thing, not even my dreams. I cringed as they breathed on me and examined every square inch of my face. I was wondering if I could make a dash to the door, when they pinned my arms down, tied me up in a pinafore and went to work on my face. Ignoring my anxious whimpers of pain, they started with my eyebrows. I had a pair of furry caterpillar like eyebrows, that met comfortably on my forehead. They never bothered anyone and no one ever bothered them. The Beauticians tilted my head back and two of them worked on each side. They threaded each one, into thin shapely arches which made me look as if I was in a constant state of startled surprise. What they could not thread, they plucked out mercilessly.

Then they started on my upper lip. I must have looked like Jenghis Khan, as no beautician’s hand had ever traveled there before. They spread warm wax, on strips of mull cloth and plastered it down, onto my upper lip. In one fell sweep, they pulled off the strips of mull cloth, with a layer of me on it. The pain was excruciating. They were treading on dangerous ground, my Little’s area, the anatomical triangle between the bridge of my nose and my upper lip. Any injury or infection would go straight to the Cavernous Sinus in my brain and cause certain death, I remembered. Did they care? No, they did not and they continued to wax, thread and pluck out everything I had ever owned, on my upper lip. Smarting with tears, I let them numb the area with ice cubes, experiencing pain at a different level.

They then propped me up and let my hair down. This may have been the distraction that saved my life. They had never seen straight black hair that reached anyone’s knees. They held a huddle to see what would suit me best.

A flat hairdo for a corpse in a coffin, I thought, sure that I would never leave the building alive.

Finally they dragged me off to a sink. I had to sit with my back to the sink with my head tilted precariously back in it. I am not tall. Nor, do I have a long swan like neck. My head passes insensibly into my trunk, with no apology. I placed my rudimentary neck gingerly on the edge of the sink and closed my eyes, as I waited for the onslaught water. When they had washed and conditioned all three and a half feet of my hair, they let me go, only to pin me down again and dry me off.

Exhausted and hungry I sat there, while they curled and crafted, a coiffure, that perched on top of my head, quite different from the sensible everything-pulled- back-knotted-out-of-the-way hairdo that I normally wore to work. When they finally turned me around to face the mirror I stared at a stranger who looked vaguely familiar. Not one bit like the unsuspecting naïve nerd, who had breezed into the parlour a lifetime ago.

How on earth are the veil and tiara going to sit on top of all this? I wondered to myself.
Sam will never recognise me.

They stepped back to survey me. They seemed quite satisfied with their handiwork and finally let me go when I said that my best friend, Evelyn, was coming home to dress me up and do my make-up, another first for me.

When I reached home for lunch, Evelyn was waiting for me. I was sent off for a shower with strict instructions not to damage my hairdo.

Evelyn had come with her Magic Make-up box. She whipped it out and opened jars that cleansed and toned my face. She then applied the make up, matte, highlights, and blush, finishing with the lip-liner and the lipstick. While she worked on my make-over, Evelyn gave me the pep talk of my life, including a primer on the birds and the bees. She felt she was in a POA, position of authority, as she was married to Joe and had just become a young mother to Yohindran.

Its going to streak down my face, Evelyn .…I moaned
It’s such a hot afternoon
Just shut up and keep still, Sue ...she ordered 

When she had finished with my face, she made me step into my shoes. The high heels matched the cream of my wedding saree and were quite delightful.  They had straps with bling and little bells that chinked when I moved.  Evelyn then helped me drape my wedding saree. Normally, bridal sarees are bought in Madras, but My Mum and I found this exquisite saree, we both liked instantly in Mr. P. Govindaswamy’s Saree Shop in Singapore and we did not look any further.  It was a cream Benares, with small motifs, in a matt gold weave, that shimmered in the light.

It was the most amazing saree that I had ever worn in my life. It draped well with every pleat in place. Evelyn then placed the tiara on my head and threaded my veil through it, with half of it covering my face and half of it trailing down my back to my waist.

I felt like a bride.

Never thought of contact lenses?  Evelyn asked
I did , I replied , in my third year of College,
What happened? she asked. They popped out during the trial… I said. The optician and I were on all fours, groping for them.

Then she did the unthinkable. She whisked my glasses away.
You are not to wear them for the wedding , she ordered.
They are so ugly…. she hissed, pretending to puke They are so ugly…
I don’t know who you look like, Sue..
Batman or Catwoman

Only a good friend, with whom you have grown up, can make outrageously rude remarks like that and get away with it. Only good friends can then roll about and cackle in gay abandon.

Blind and veiled, I walked up the aisle on my father’s arm. After the service I walked down the aisle on Sam’s arm. Up and Down, I was lead blind. The smartest thing that I could do, in this state of Utter-Blur, was to flash a fixed blank smile at the crowd, so that I would not appear rude, if I did not greet smile with smile.

That is how all our wedding photos have me smiling like a Cheshire cat, wearing a prophylactic, plastic smile, plastered on my face. When the wedding photographs arrived, my mum took one look at them and gave one of her disapproving Hrmmphs that conveyed more than a thousand written words.

No shy blushing bride this…. she said.
All her teeth are out……………Hrmmph

6 thoughts on “The Bridal Makeover”

  1. Loved this, Susie. Everyone needs a friend like Evelyn. All this post needs is a picture of the blushing bride ??‍♀️
    I have nieces in S’pore — love the “utter-blur” term

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