Wednesday, November 19, 2014
A Touch of Spice
The seven blocks to Tanya's Total Look salon seemed like an eternity at first. But into the first block mummy and Felicia each took one of my hands and gripped them tightly. Fortunately, we had placed all the packages in the trunk of the car, and they only had their purses to carry, giving them each a free hand to comfort me.
I was wearing a very fluffy rose-colored sweater with a pair of charcoal gray stirrup slacks. The black patent leather slip-on casuals I wore had a platform heel--enough of a heel to change my gait to shorter, more precise steps. I had nylon slip-up stockings on, my own socks being somehow "misplaced" at the boutique. Everything was set off by a white silk scarf tied at my neck, the ends falling to my shoulder. I consoled myself by thanking my lucky stars, that I wasn't wearing the emerald-colored bolero jacket, or the cream-colored harem slacks with the red sash belt that were now boxed and in the trunk.
Entering Tanya's, the receptionist greeted both Felicia and Elaine by name. She then asked, "Well, are you girls going to introduce me to your new girlfriend?"
I wanted to disappear but my mentors held my hands all the more tightly.
Felicia came to my rescue by saying, albeit jokingly, "Goodness, Rachel! The lighting in here needs to be improved. The girl you refer to happens to be my husband, Billy. I'll agree he's a slightly built pretty boy, but this is the first time he's ever been mistaken for a female."
Everyone had a slightly uncomfortable laugh. As I sat down, Rachel led the ladies into the salon. She came out and handed me a copy of Vogue. "Sorry, we only have fashion, beauty and gossip magazines left. Most of the ladies in here tend to read business and news publications--except for your wife. We keep American Horsewoman around for her." She smiled prettily.
As I sat reading, my thoughts were on lunch. Glancing at my watch, I figured it might be a late one, or possibly more like an early supper. Seated where I was, I got more than a few glances from the lady clients entering the salon. One girl about ten said, to my embarrassment, "Mummy--that girl with the ponytail braid has on such a pretty sweater!" This brought a smile to Rachel's face.
About 45 minutes into my reading, my reverie was broken by Elaine coming into the lobby saying, "Billy, we've just had our manicures and need your opinion on a matter of Felicia's hair."
I followed her into the salon puzzled, but thrilled that Felicia would want my opinion on anything, especially her appearance. Entering a private cubicle towards the rear of the salon, I saw a stylist and a woman facing the mirror. The women had a perfect, short, honey-blonde bob. She spun in her chair to face me. Smiling, she said, "Well how do you like my new look!" It took me a moment to realize it was Felicia.
Stunned at this complete change, I was speechless. She decided to help me out. "Goodness, silly, it's a wig! I'm thinking of getting my hair colored, cut and styled like this. What do you think?" she asked.
I was actually relieved. I had always loved her hair in a shoulder-length pageboy, flipped under slightly. As for her color, I'd always liked it when she colored it a couple of shades darker--a rich, deep sort of burgundy auburn. Feeling slightly bold, I took a deep breath, and told her.
I was relieved when she actually smiled and said, "Well, Rebecca, I think that settles it. Why don't I go over to Carol's booth and have the color done like my Billy likes it? I'll also have her give me a slight trim, and of course, we'll curl it under," she added, winking at me.
As Felicia walked away, Rebecca spoke to Elaine, who quickly maneuvered me into the chair vacated by my wife. "You know, Elaine, Billy here has some serious split ends. Actually with that cute outfit he's wearing, that drab hair color just doesn't do it either. Check this out," she said, as she reached for a somewhat longer bobbed wig of the same blonde shade Felicia had worn, and handed it to Elaine. She coiled up my braid, and pinned it to the top of my head. Placing a wig cap over my hair, she took the wig from Elaine, and snugly fitted it on my head. She and Elaine smiled as the stylist fluffed the wig out and combed it.
"Let's go get Felicia and see what she thinks," Rebecca said excitedly.
"No., she's probably already getting colored. I think she'll love it. Won't she, dear?" asked Elaine as she squeezed my shoulders.
My resolve had been nearly completely weakened. I wanted to protest but thought of the scene it might cause. Indeed, the consequences could be excessively humiliating.
"Well, pumpkin, should I have Rebecca go ahead with the treatment or not? We don't have all day. Tanya, herself, is waiting to do me," she said, increasing the pressure on my shoulders slightly and then relaxing it.
Still confused, I replied meekly, "Yes, I think so." Then, with a little more confidence, "Yes. Of course. Especially if Felicia will like it."
"Like it? She'll love it! Rebecca, you have a new client!" said Elaine gleefully, while hugging me firmly.
Placing a plastic, salon-style cape on me, Rebecca propelled me towards the shampoo sink. Although initially hesitant, I soon became immersed in the relaxing pleasures of being pampered--the feel of skilled hands working the shampoo into my scalp, the pleasant, cherry scent of the conditioner, the warm water and cream rinse.
Even after she began the coloring, and my adverse reaction to the strong scent of the chemicals became evident, she assured me it would all be worth it. I smiled and relaxed.
Seated in front of the mirror, I became mesmerized as she trimmed my hair to the correct length. Then she worked in a small amount of sculpting lotion and began my styling and blow dry.
"Mother, I truly can't believe you had Rebecca do Billy's hair," she said as she entered my cubicle. She stopped suddenly when she saw me and she smiled, and said, "My humble apologies, mother. Goodness, Billy, you look sensational!" she cried as she hugged me and squeezed me in her strong arms.
Her hair was still wet, but had been trimmed and tapered. She already had that glow that women get, when they know they'll be leaving a salon looking absolutely stunning.
Then she paused, glancing at everyone, "You know, Rebecca, this is a picayune matter. Don't you think that his brows and lashes should match the hair color?" she inquired.
"Oh, absolutely. A brow and lash tint is definitely in order. In fact, his brows could be cleaned up a tad," Rebecca replied.
Felicia threw her hands up and smiled saying, "Excellent. Then, that does it. Come along, mother. By the time we reach the café, they'll have stopped serving lunch."
Soon I was being given both these treatments as mother and daughter returned to their respective booths. A manicure with clear varnish was thrown in as a freebie.
At the cash register as Elaine paid, I couldn't take my eyes off myself. Between the new hairdo, the fashionable clothes, and the things done to my eye area, I had taken on a whole new persona.
The three of us left to go to the Green Earth Café, a trendy health-food restaurant. My mood had somehow changed from one of shame, to a peaceful feeling of mild acceptance. For some reason, I wanted to belong. I wanted to be part of what these ladies did together. I'm really uncertain what caused this. I still believe it was the "salon experience" as it's sometimes referred to.
I've spoken to many cross-dressed friends about it. Some forced; some, like me, coerced; others, voluntary. Most all agreed that their first pampering at a salon with the "girls" had really been special.
I felt like walking and chatting with the ladies and expressing myself more with my hands and eye movements. It made me feel very happy and lightheaded to do this. I noticed the ladies' strong approving glances and smiles.
The effect of the whole treatment had opened up my eyes and made my face and hair even more feminine. Along with my new, almost natural mannerisms, I was very nearly girlish.
This was even more evident when the hostess at the café said, "Where would you ladies like to sit?" Worse yet, the waitress complimented me on both my "pretty sweater" and "lovely hair color", at the same time referring to me as "miss."
Throughout the meal, whenever the waitress did come by, she appeared to compliment me about something. Feeling self-conscious, I would thank her politely in a soft, subtle voice. I just didn't want her to realize I wasn't a female.
Finally, she asked Felicia, whom she seemed to know, "Where's your husband? I thought he was coming with you and Elaine today. I've been dying to meet him. You've both told me so much about him. Couldn't make it?" she inquired politely.
"No, he's just been so busy lately with the housekeeping, Linda. We decided to invite my cousin Giselle along though. She's visiting from Florida. Has a little cold--the weather. Oh, goodness! How rude of me. You haven't been introduced!" she exclaimed.
As she introduced both Linda and me, I managed to do my best to limply shake her hand and use my best, slightly feminine, slightly hoarse voice.
Linda continued to complement me. "Giselle, I think you look fabulous. I just love your natural, no make up look," she said, smiling.
"Oh, she usually uses make up. We left the salon in such a hurry, Rebecca didn't get a chance to do Giselle's make over. She was a little late getting Giselle in for her appointment--kind of backed up. We didn't want to miss our reservations here. We're going to do her make up in the powder room before we leave," Felicia said, her eyes peering at me the whole time, her speech clear and precise.
"Well, I'll bet she looks really great then. Enjoy the rest of your meal," Linda said cheerily.
When it came time to leave, Felicia said in a matter-of-fact manner, "Let's go to the powder room, Giselle. No complaints. I think you know what this is all about. If you don't, I'll explain at home." Taking me by the arm, she nearly dragged me to the ladies room.
When I told her I needed to use the rest room first, she made sure I sat down to use it.
As I approached the vanity in the powder room area she produced a tube of lipstick and pointed to the vanity bench saying, "We may as well be convincing. No female leaves a café restroom without freshening her lipstick." She smiled.
"Please, dear," I pleaded. "Not just this moment," I practically begged.
"Why not? You've been heading this way for ages. I say the sooner the better. Now get over here. Or do I have to carry out the threat I made at the dress shop?" she asked firmly.
Walking towards the mirror, I felt nearly all of my last vestiges of maleness melting away. The final pieces would dissolve later that evening. For the time being, I told myself this was just a temporary thing.
I have to admit that Felicia applied my lipstick with love and care, making it perfect. She even used it to give my cheeks a blushed look, after putting my foundation and powder on. Then my shadow, pencil and mascara.
Fully made up, staring at a real feminine looking person named "Giselle" I realized what had been going on all along. All the hints, the innuendoes, the feminine situations.
Actually, it had been obvious, but I had denied it. Denied I was a candidate. Denied what they were doing. Denied that my token resistance was proof that I had actually welcomed my transformation.
Satisfied she took my arm and we left the restroom and café to meet Elaine on the sidewalk. Elaine smiled at me complimenting me on my choice of lipstick shades, barely acknowledging that I was fully made-up.
"Candied Plum, isn't it Felicia?" Elaine inquired.
"Close, mother. It's Black Cherry," my wife replied.
"The rest of the colors are lovely choices as well. Beautifully blended, dear," she said holding my chin in her palm, and gently turning my head, side to side.
TO BE CONTINUED
Don't forget to choose who makes the prettier girl (details here)!