Personal shoppers for chosen tribes

I would like to hire someone – an individual, small business, large corporation, other-worldly being, I really don’t care so long as they can show us how to relocate.  I realize there are websites a’plenty that map out moving to the most minute detail, including companies for packing, loading and hauling your things.  ‘Things’ are not my issue.

Don’t let me kid you – things were my issue until we decided to bite the bullet and hire a moving company.  We have too little time to pack our current house and our new one has lots of stairs.  Stairs when you’re moving?  Pretty sure that’s Dante’s seventh level.  My disposition brightened considerably once we made that decision.

Anyway, I want to hire someone to relocate our actual lives. Like a personal shopper, but for friends and where to get your hair cut.  As to the former, I have the greatest circle of girlfriends ever.   There are four of us and you may be thinking, ‘Oh, but none could be better than mine’ … and that’s sweet for you, but you’d be wrong.  So, someone in Boulder needs to be busy right now, finding three women to step into those roles.

They’ll need to possess intelligence, an exquisitely refined dry sense of humor, sarcasm, adoration for children and animals, an understanding of when you want to ditch both, patience for various levels of insanity to coax each other back from the edge, an ability to hold lengthy conversations with the exchange of one look, regular usage of acronyms made up over a decade of conversation, a poke-you-in-the-eye honesty, a willingness to drop everything for scary dr appointments and medical procedures, an ability to slip effortlessly between each other’s children and have enough youthful (and adult) transgressions in their past to preclude judging others – unless we don’t like you, then all bets are off.  Being well-read is a must and knowing most of Arthur by heart would also be points in their favor.  And when one of us is referred to an oncologist, immediately hearing, “We’re going to love you through this, whatever it is.” And knowing that already, before the words are spoken.

Yep, that’s what I need the expert to find and have waiting for me upon arrival – in the driveway, preferably.

It’s funny, the Divine Miss M is convinced we don’t understand anything she’s going through regarding leaving her friends.  And regularly tells us so, with a dramatic flair perfected by 11-year-old girls.  Yet, when I think of those three, I can scarcely breathe.

It’s hard to leave your chosen tribe.

And then there is hair.  A natural segue, right?  I’m not pretentious.  On weekends, my hair is usually up and make-up rarely on.  But for someone who would otherwise have been salt and pepper at 35, a good hairstylist is important (thanks for those genetics, Mom).  You can use things like Angie’s List to find dry cleaners, vets, landscaping companies, etc.  But hair stylists – way more tricky.  You don’t realize this particular difficulty until you move.  A bad haircut leads to annoyance (maybe mortification) every time you fix your hair for six weeks or more, depending on the damage.  Plus, the new one needs to be able to cover grey without turning my hair red, which it stubbornly favors.

And because I can’t let anything be simple, my current hairstylist was my friend long before she started battling the grey.  She’s brash and I’m way sensitive but she informed me when we met we were indeed going to be friends and I simply needed to develop a thicker skin to deal with her blunt nature.  I found it incredibly presumptuous, especially since I’m quite picky about who is anything more than an acquaintance, but I was begrudgingly impressed by her moxie.  Plus, she adored my child even when M was a toddler, so I had to respect her perseverance, which was required then.  Maybe M was also just discriminate about friends.  Or, maybe she was just a brat.  Could go either way, really.  In any event, my tribe increased by one.

So, the expert needs to find a hairstylist that can make my color look natural, competently cut hair that is thick in the back but thin on the sides and while I don’t want the new one to be a tribal member, they do need to be moderately friendly, maybe even a little brash.

These are herculean tasks, and two that make me want to start unpacking boxes.  But these same people are thrilled for our opportunity, regularly admire our courage and when mine falters even just a little, they choke back tears while reassuring me we have everything it takes to be successful.  Because they believe in and want what’s best for us, even while it breaks their heart.

It also doesn’t hurt a bit that we’ll be somewhere to stay when they go skiing.  They’re my tribe, after all, I know them well. ; )



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