A Social Appointment

Last week I headed out to my barber to take a little off the top.  Actually I am not sure if barber is the correct term in my situation.  While growing up I usually went to male hair cutters and they were typically addressed as the barber, but when I went to to the “Luck of the Draw” locations while in college (living on the cheap then and equated every dollar spent to the number of slices it could buy at the local cardboard and grease pizza place) I had a lot of women cutters that generally referred to themselves as stylists.  The difference there is they were into the hair wash and blow dry process which differentiated them from the o’l chop, gab and pay barbers at the Men’s Room in Springfield (yeah, it was actually called the Men’s Room).  My current “barber” is a lady, but beyond a quick spritz to wet down the hair, doesn’t subscribe to the dunk and blower approach – which fits me perfectly.  I should check her card sometime and see what title she gives herself.  So why am I boring you with details on my hair?  Actually, I had an interesting observation while I was getting my mop spruced up.  About halfway through my cut an older man came in and sat down in one of the waiting chairs.  He must have been a regular, because he exchanged greetings with my barber and another individual waiting for me to finish.  This intrigued me slightly because there generally isn’t a wait line since she only takes appointments and not walk-ins and the part I appreciate most is she is always on schedule.  As I got up to pay, my barber commented that his appointment was not until later.  He acknowledged this and responded he just thought he would be early today.  I think she was still a little surprised and checked the schedule book while taking my payment.  As she gave me the change she confirmed with the guy that his appointment was not until 1:30pm (it was 11:30am when she finished with me).  That internally jolted me a little based on how jam packed my days usually are.  He was likely retired, but said “I can go and come back if you want me to, but figured I would just come and visit awhile”  She quickly responded that is was perfectly alright and joked how it was a great place to catch up with everyone.  As I shut the door I started rationalizing this scene as I quickly headed to the car to get to the next meeting at work.  I kind of felt sad for the guy who has nothing better to do with the extra two hours of the day.  Isn’t there an immediate family member or relative to visit with, some event or site to take in instead of spending two hours waiting for a 10 minute hair cut?  I decided I felt bad for the individual but glad he had enough initiative to seek out some social interaction as opposed to just sitting at home staring out the same window or worse watching sensationalist news.  Here’s to hoping I have activities to fill my hours when I decide to jump off the employment train.  Maybe I’ll be blogging about the largest ball of tinfoil I found on my quest to hit every national park before my ticket gets punched.  It will be interesting to see how retirement life is for the tech savvy generation.