See, I packed no hair products when I left the US, and things have been getting...fuzzy, to say the least. My Aunt Fran (who is both understanding and fantastic) is mailing me a jar of the essentials, but we can only guess how long that'll be crossing the Atlantic, and when I looked at myself in the mirror yesterday morning, I could swear it cracked.
So. My very first multi-train journey solo.
First, a round of phone calls to all the most likely hair places in the area. Most of them had no idea what I was talking about when I asked for lock-twisting gel, and none of them had it in stock. So I found myself going all the way out to a Sally's Salon Services in Fulham, which is about an hour away as the train runs, and about two hours if you've only got a hazy idea of which trains you're taking, and when.
(It was fun, though. I had to change trains in Clapham Junction, which involved looking up my train and destination on an enormous train schedule that changed about once every five minutes, and almost missing my train twice [the first time turned out to not be my train, and the second time I was busy getting coffee.])
I took no pictures en route, just because I was more concerned about getting there and back on time, but here are some of Fulham.
I loved Fulham. I may go back just for fun. See, the neighborhood I live in, Tolworth, is pretty upper-middle vanilla, if you know what I mean, but Fulham was a different story.
(That building in the last picture says it's a bath house...it's got Poseidon on the front like it's a bath house...but I'm pretty sure it's a bar. Psh. Same thing. Right?)
Apparently, Saturday is market day. For everyone. As soon as I turned the corner away from the train station, I could see why the lady on the phone didn't ask silly questions about "ethnic hair." The streets were packed with small businesses and what I like to call EverythingFood shops, catering to people in all the colors.
My favorite part was the fruit stands. Competition in these parts looked to be pretty bad, because everyone and their mother had a big long table in the street full of all the fruit you could ever need (and a few that you probably didn't know you needed - lychee, anyone?), and you could get a pound of just about anything for 1 pound. After I picked up my hair supplies (YAY), I bought a pound of mushrooms, a pound of tomatoes, a pound of apples and then I stood in this queue
for half a lifetime, buying two pounds of cherries for my Valentine.
The shopkeepers here are extremely friendly- they say things like "Pick you up a teddy for your fella, love, shall I?" and "Sorry, darling; queue's this way." They are also extremely comfortable with inquiring into your personal life, and will come up with some very creative ways to get you to buy a fish. ("Squid good for your face!" ...I think he was trying to say it would be good for my complexion?)
After buying my cherries, I reversed my trains and headed back home, because Josh and I still needed to go grocery shopping. For those of you who are interested, here's the shop and my purchases.
And that was my - very small - adventure yesterday.