The Farmer & His Wife

John Tay­lor has some cut­ting words to say about a trip to St An­drews.

The People's Friend - - Contents -

DID I want it styled?’” I was re­count­ing to Anne my visit to the bar­ber’s, my first for some time. I hadn’t heard Anne laugh so much for ages. “Did you say yes?” “Does it look like it?” We were sit­ting at the kitchen ta­ble with cof­fee.

She said she knew as soon as I drove into the yard that some­thing was wrong. I slammed the bug­gie door shut, en­tered the kitchen and slammed that door shut, too!

It was her fault, any­way. As I left for the auc­tion in Cu­par my last in­struc­tions were not to come home with­out hav­ing a hair­cut. We were go­ing out on Fri­day night and I had to look tidy, she said.

I looked in one bar­ber’s shop in St An­drews, but there was one man in the chair and four wait­ing, so I searched and found an­other with one in the chair and only two wait­ing. I took off my bon­net and sat down.

I waited. He took 20 min­utes for each hair­cut, so it was nearly an hour be­fore I got into the chair.

Then I saw the price list over the mir­ror fac­ing me.

If I had no­ticed sooner I would have walked out and braved Anne’s wrath.

“What do you think it cost me to have a hair­cut?” I asked her.

I’ve been spoiled as far as hair­cuts are con­cerned. When I was a boy my fa­ther did the nec­es­sary with scis­sors.

In more re­cent years I had it done by a neigh­bour, Jim.

Jim and Vera had a small farm and must have made a bare liv­ing but they never grum­bled.

Anne and I used to visit them once ev­ery three months for my trim.

It was an out­ing we both en­joyed. Jim and I would in­spect his stock and Anne nat­tered with Vera.

Then I’d get my trim as Jim and I put the farm­ing world to rights.

The price? Jim would have been of­fended if I’d even of­fered to pay. He and Vera en­joyed our visit.

A hair­cut from Jim was one of those sim­ple plea­sures which we both en­joyed and which no money could buy.

Jim and Vera have re­tired, hence me hav­ing to go into town for my hair­cut and pay­ing through the nose!

What would it have cost if I’d agreed to have it styled? I shud­der to think! ■

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