Here they euphemistically call a document issued by the Bureau of Immigration and Aliens a “White Card.” without which nobody can leave the country. I have close friends who have been waiting for this famous card for years, while they renew their expiring visas, over and over again, from the respective countries to which they wish to travel.

Today a simile occurs to me, with regards to my head. It turns out that for many years all the people who have cut my hair, sooner or later leave the country, leaving me in a constant search for hairdressers. I’m a busy person, so I don’t have time to spend waiting my turn for hours. The state-employed hairdressers in my country leave much to be desired. I refer to those paid in Cuban pesos. (Well, the others are Cuban too, but convertible. This means that they are of equal value to dollars, plus even a little more.) Most of these establishments have poor lighting and lack water, so they have to use what is collected in large containers. The good products are scarce, and in most cases we have to take our own shampoo. All this, plus the inconveniences of transportation, has led many women, and even men, to seek the services of private hairdressers. Men have it even worse than we do, because barbers practically disappeared with the dinosaurs.

Some days ago, I had the immense pleasure of having my older brother (who is outside Cuba), send me some commentaries about my blog, which I still haven’t had the pleasure of seeing in person, since I don’t have internet.  Among them stood out one from an old neighbor, the best hairstylist in all of Nuevo Vedado.  A nice woman, modern, intelligent, and a tremendous stylist.  She at one time was the person who looked after me, cutting my hair in a movie hairstyle, while I laughed and had a marvelous time with her lively conversation.  One day she was gone.   She had left the country.  Later, I met another marvelous person that not only cut my hair, she also dyed my hair and styled my hair, she came to my house to offer her services and between cups of coffee we became great friends, we were like sisters.  She never forgot my kids’ birthdays.  She also left, taking our kind friendship with her.  During my fruitless visits to the private hospital to look after my dentures, I met a spectacular stomatologist who never was able to take care of anything due to lack of supplies, but we made friends and she came to perform the role as a hair dresser.   She did my hair in an authentic Garcon hairstyle.  During quite a lot of time, I could show off my nice haircut until she also left the country.  I continued by giving myself my own haircuts.

Then, about four years ago, a very showy lady with the air of someone from Seville moved to my block.  She proved to be the stylist of the ICAI and, as we became friends, she started to give me my new look.  She told me her troubles and little by little I was learning how alone she felt and that she felt an enormous urge to to join her only daughter and grandchildren who were living in the USA.  One fine day she, too, left and once again I found myself on standby. Now, finally, a beautiful creature whom I love like a daughter, passed a course in hairdressing and has taken me in, but it won’t be for long since yesterday I was a witness at her wedding and soon she will be off to Spain with her new husband.

Fortunately, these post are just read here on the planet where I live, otherwise the queue (line) to the doors of my house, would join that of the bakery on 26th Avenue.

Translated by BW.