Soap bars, Shuangxi cigarettes, plastic hair rollers, scissors, a comb, a plastic chopping block, a washbasin, swarovski's rhinestones, chairs, stones, hair, a mirror, jelly wax, inkjet print, a plastic basket, a carpet, a plastic shelf and plastic containers
I have frequented the barber shop around the entrance of my village since childhood. The female hairdresser there is talkative, even if each conversation is similar. The shop does not own a shampoo bed. There is a washing basin with a short chair located about thigh high as an alternative. Bending the waist and burying the head inside, shower water pour from the top through the pinnae and the cheek like rituals of baptism. Aside the direction of the wall, I always stealthily open my left eye to witness all shampoo bubbles and water gone. The remaining drops seem like escaping from falling into the abyss. Watch. Watch. Watch. Listen. Small lakes are trapped in my ears and taken somewhere else…
Certain categories of career exist in this society; certain familiar strangers turn intimate behavior into services. Masseurs press our skins with fingers; tailors measure the length and width of our limbs; hairdressers wave scissors between scalps and hair. Fatigue should be dispersed; grand banquets are going to be hold; hoping that the mixture of trouble is put aside?
In such civilized world full of information, nothing is entirely new. However, daily imagery has gathered to create an unusual situation by our overwhelming senses. Pieces of memory flash back being transformed into our daily habits, values, faiths or beliefs.
Fragments of life keep shocking me. Shampoo bubbles, scissors or hair roller, do they retain, those fleeting circumstances? Usual objects are projected along with full of haunting impression, as well as initial ideas.
She, the hairdresser mentioned. Former barber shops in the Mainland were mostly run by the government. It offered courses for trainees. Like terms of bamboo hair and wood hair, I had never heard of. Suddenly, connecting to home business, barber shops or massage shops around villages, most of them were operated by female immigrants from the Mainland to Hong Kong. Sometimes, our conversations associated with communism, political attitudes or anecdotes about her marriage in a walled village. There was a huge distance of values among the scalp. This ecology might soon disappear in modern society, yet it seemingly indicated particular time and space about the identity-related issues towards my generation, too chaotic.