As I stood before the mirror brushing back my hair, I reached out for my regular hair band. The one I used to pin my hair all the way back giving me a stern matron look. Looking critically at the reflection that stared back at me I let my hand go. The tresses came cascading back, swinging softly at my shoulders. I rummaged in my drawer and held up a brown claw clip. I figured it was time for change.
Getting into the car as Saathi adjusted the rear view mirror, I caught him looking appreciatively at the swinging locks. Grinning from ear to ear, I asked “Like my new look?” He nodded. The day was already looking bright. Back at my desk at work I focused on the job at hand and forgot about my tresses till my first restroom break. Standing before the mirror I felt childish. I liked the relaxed face looking back. The bags under the eyes remained but the stern look was replaced by a childlike mirth. My hair seemed to have a life of its own.
I couldn’t help wondering how much little things like leaving my hair loose could do to me. Memories of growing up in a home where loose hair was frowned upon came rushing back. It takes years and years to unlearn impressions wedged in my mind. Only exceptions were when I let my hair dry from the weekly oil bath with “nalla yennai” or sesame oil. I smiled when I thought of the good old days of oil baths, shikakai powder and saambrani. Of laughter, love and simple Sunday treats. Of having baths in parallel rooms chattering away mindless of the rest of the family sitting in the “mitham” or courtyard.
I sit eyes locked on my monitor, my mind miles away.