Recently, I have started getting the occasional manicure/pedicure. I found great place nearby. And the man that does my nails is truly awesome. He is from Vietnam. His English is good although he does speak with an accent. Sometimes when I am talking with him, there are some small cultural differences that make understanding each other difficult. One funny example of this is when he found a bite mark on one of my toes during a pedicure. He asked me why it was there. The conversation that ensued was one of mistakes, misunderstandings, and funny explanations…
“I see cut…” Din asked me
“Cut?” I asked pulling my leg up to inspect the foot.
Din pointed at my toe, “There…” he said as if it were obvious.
“Oh,” I said knowing exactly what he was talking about. “That’s not a cut…that’s a bite mark…”
“Oh, no,” Din replied truly taken aback by anything going after my toes.
“Oh,” I said flippantly, “don’t worry about it… It was my guinea pig…”
“You have pig?!?” he half remarked half yelled. Din turned to his neighbor and said something in Vietnamese. The girl working on the client next to me looked at me with amazement and said something back to Din. They were very excited.
“Pig?” I asked. “No, a guinea pig…” I said holding my hands up to indicate the size.
“Oh,” Din said knowingly. He looked at my toe. “Baby pig?” he finally asked.
“No,” I said starting to giggle. I took a deep breath remembering that there was a cultural divide between us right now. “A guinea pig… Hold on,” I said going for my purse. I thought that if I showed him a picture of Alfalfa he might understand better. Din grabbed my foot and plunged it back into the water. I was knocked off balanced and my phone went flying. The next several second were in slow motion. I watched as the phone headed for the foot well full to the brim with water. Din looked up just in time to react and catch nothing but air… The phone bounced off the edge of the well and went skittering off on the floor right towards the sleeping dog. Oh, did I forget to mention that there is a beautiful German-Shepard mix that roams the store. He is a great dog. I have pet and played with him several times before. The owner of the nail salon tells everyone, “He is always well-behaved and well-mannered…” I didn’t care at that moment… All I saw way my phone heading his way. “Crap!” I yelled going to get out of the pedicure bath.
“I get it for you…” Din said jumping up. Just then I saw the sleeping dog open his eyes and put his head up sniffing at the phone. He must have decided that it smelled good…and because it smelled good, it must taste good. The dog turned his head and grabbed my phone with his mouth. Din yelled, “NO!” and them something in Vietnamese at the dog. I swear because it was my phone, the ‘always well-behaved dog’ decided that it was time to break that well-behaved spell. The dog did not drop the phone. Nope. It took off with my phone in his mouth.
Din yelled again. The lady that was working next to Din popped up and took off after the dog that was half way across the room. I jumped out of the pedicure bath and attempted to give chase also. I forgot one important thing: my feet were wet. Yeup. Slick floor, wet feet, and stupid me. I wound up taking two steps and falling on my ass. Bam! I was down. As I sat there in complete misery, I heard the owner and the other lady yelling at the dog. Din walked up behind me and asked, “You ok?”
“Nope,” was all I could get out. I was in a lot of pain…a pain in the butt that is… Din tried to grab me to help me up. “No,” I said turning to look at him. “Just leave me for a minute…” I heard a commotion from the front of the store. The dog came running towards me and slid to a stop right at my feet. Din said something and the dog dropped the phone at my feet. Both ladies came up behind the dog and he took off past us. The owner picked up my phone and began to rub off the dog slobber on her shirt.
She handed me the ‘clean’ phone after several shirt swipes with a quick, “Sorry.” She offered her hand to help me up.
“Thanks, but I can do it…” I said looking down at the phone. There were some new small scratches on the case and the screen cover needed to be replaced but that was it. Both the owner and the other lady went back to their clients. I pulled the damaged screen cover off of the phone and handed it to Din. “Want to see a picture of my guinea pig?” I asked from the floor.
“Ok,” he said, “Maybe you sit on chair?”
“Yeup,” I said finally taking his proffered hand. I got back into the pedicure chair. I pulled up pictures of Alfalfa and showed it to him. He agreed that he was a handsome pig. After my pedicure, I sat down for a manicure.
Din was still curious about the bite on my toe. He asked, “How did you pig escape?”
“Oh, no,” I said laughing, “He’s a free-ranger…”
“Free-rang-er?” Din asked completely confused. It took me the rest of my manicure to explain that one to him. After all, how do you explain Alfalfa to someone to anyone… I can’t explain him to myself and I’m his mom… (And by the way, because of the dog incident, the owner didn’t make me pay for the services I received. But, I did give Din a good tip!.)
P.S. – If you are interested in helping with Alfalfa’s medical care, we have started a Chip In fund for him. We are almost at our goal. His surgery is scheduled for Tuesday, December 11. He is going to have a double mastectomy. All funds will go towards his care. Any unused funds will be donated to a guinea pig rescue. Thank you to all of the Angles that have given already. God bless you. And please say a prayer that my baby boy does well and recovers fast.