Valentine’s Day Surprise 2015

This year I decided to try something a bit different (for me!) to celebrate Valentine’s Day. I planned two surprises for my wife in celebration of the day. One would be something that I’ve done that she hasn’t, and something that she’s done that I haven’t. We’ll talk about the first one in a different post, but the second? Pull up a cuppa coffee, put on your fuzzy slippers, and have a read…
I had to schedule this adventure THREE TIMES in the 10 days leading up to the actual day. First time, I was all set with the time, then learned that I’d been scheduled to work my second job that day. I learned it at the last minute, so I had to scramble to try to reschedule. Thankfully the salon (yes, salon) had a spot available for the 14th, and I booked it. I was so happy that the plan was going to come together (again!), but then I rechecked the other booking of the day; RATS!!! The start of the second one (salon) overlapped the end of the first one (to be revealed at some later time) by about 15 minutes. DAGNABBIT!!! What was a desperate husband to do??
I called the salon back and luckily was able to re-reschedule for a little later in the day. This would be better, actually, as we’d be able to scoot home between events. Could this actually work out? Might my Valentine’s Day Surprise work???
We arrived at the second location with time to spare. Tracey had been here once before, and I’d only been into the parking lot, but never upstairs and into the salon. The event I’d scheduled was a mani-pedi with spa treatment for both of us. I’d seen pictures of ladies getting mani-pedis, but had never experienced one first hand (so to speak). The salon owner was cordial, chatty, and offered us some coffee or tea. I chose tea. I must say that I was disappointed that it was served in a disposable cup; for the prices charged at this place, a nice porcelain mug (like at a diner) or other ‘real’ coffee/tea cup would have been more appropriate. The appointments were running a bit long, and staff kept coming out to introduce themselves, apologize for the delay, and offered assurance that they would be with us ‘soon’.
Finally, it was our turn. But first, lettuce take an #ussie!

Valentine's Day Mani-Pedi
Valentine’s Day Mani-Pedi

We were taken back into a small area and seated at the mani stations. In the same area were two pedicure….contraptions, currently occupied by two ladies in their late 20’s. The were visibly surprised to see me sit at my table, and even more so when the young lady started working on my hands. I cast some nervous glances over to Tracey, and she reassured me that everything was going to be alright. After some poking, prodding, and some rubbing of some sort of lotion, the lady put the ‘spa’ treatment on my hands. I was looking all zombie like at this point, and my hands were starting to stiffen up, as if they were encased in plaster of Paris.

Valentine's Day Mani
Valentine’s Day mani

Not much happened to my hands after this, as I decide NOT to get my fingernails painted. Surprised? When we moved to the pedi area, we were down to one attendant to share between the two of us. WHAT????? I don’t get my OWN pedicurist? OUTRAGE. ahahahah…
We climbed up into our recliners with a tub at the feet area, and settled in for….i dunno what. I was a bit confused by the process thus far; my hands really didn’t feel any ‘better’, just different. As if i’d given them a good scrubbing at the OR sink; no oils, just skin. I didn’t ‘get it’, but hey. At least i’d tried it. Tracey says that I have super smooth hands anyway, which is true. Being a nurse, i don’t get to use my hands for much manual labor.
While the lady pedicured Tracey’s feet, mine soaked in some sort of bath. Some sort of soap (?) was dumped into the churning water before I put my dogs in there, but I do have to admit that it was kinda nice just to soak my feet for a bit. Odd, but nice. Looked like this:

Valentine's Day Pedi
Valentine’s Day Pedi

When it came my turn, she took out some Medieval torture device-looking tools and started to dig away at my cuticles. When she’d wipe the tool on the towel on her leg, all kindsa skin was left behind. Well, just one kind; DEAD. Tracey lovingly chuckled and said something like, “oh my god your feet are horrific!” “wow, that’s a lot of skin from your cuticles!” to which the salon lady said, “you should come in to get this removed more frequently.”
Really? Are you kidding me right now? Come do this MORE often? Seemed like a sales-y pitch to me, and since i prefer to do things based on evidence rather than just opinion, I said, “what bad things might happen if I continue to let the cuticles do what they’ve been doing?” I mean, they’ve been doing their thing for 46 years so far, and I still have all 10 toes and toenails, so….
She said something like, “well, the skin might grow too far out to protect your toes, which wouldn’t allow your toe nails to grow, which would make them pretty useless.” I get her point, but it is lost on me. As long as the toes keep me from falling onto my face, I’m not really concerned about their appearance.

Pedi tool of death
Pedi tool of death

More ‘spa’ treatment was applied to our feet. Tracey’s feet exhibited some interesting drying patterns as the stuff dried out, and we noticed that when she wrinkled her foot it looked really weird. We spent most of the drying time bending and flexing our feet to make strange patterns in the stuff.

Valentine's Day Zombie Feet
Zombie Feet

Since we’d waited some time past our scheduled time, the owner offered us each a bottle of their stock polish to take home. Tracey chose a deep shade of red-ish purple called “Bastille My Heart,” and I felt a bit slighted because no one had asked me about MY color choice. While Tracey’s nails were getting painted, I browsed the shelf between us. The first shade that caught my eye was a nasty, pukey green. I said, “i’ll use this one!” Tracey said, “yuck. that looks like vomit.” Turning over the bottle revealed the name “Open the car window,” which of course cracked me up. I eventually settled on “Skull and Glossbones,” which was an interesting shade of grey. (See what I did there)? It looked as though it would match the color of the drying paste on my feet. When it came time, the lady applied the polish to my Polish toes, and our adventure was over.

Valentine's Day Skull and Glossbones
Valentine’s Day Skull and Glossbones

All in all my experience at Expectations Salon and Spa was a good one. We were treated well, they tolerated my inexperience and apprehension, and most importantly Tracey and I were able to share the experience and have a few laughs. Would I go back? Maybe. But not because of the cuticle thing. Nope, I’d go back so that I could spend a few uninterrupted hours with my wife.

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