The Tibetan boy (he’s not like a boy boy, more like 25). I get the Tibetan boy. Tara gets the woman.
I wonder whether boys know what pedicures are let alone how to actually GIVE one. But I sit. And smile politely. And think that at least it’s not a bikini wax. It’s just feet. Though my feet are so gross right now he might prefer to give me a full Brazilian. That comes from walking around barefoot in the sun for two weeks. They are as calloused and scaley as a lizard’s claws. I have a labourer’s feet. Like I’ve been working on a road gang barefoot in between digging in the fields for potatoes. I’m almost too embarrassed to put them on his lap. Almost I said.
Tara has a moment with the implements. ‘Are they sterilised?’ she asks. This from the girl who almost got a tattoo in Mumbai from a man who didn’t know that a circle has an equal radius and whose first words to her were ‘I like pink thongs.’
I look at the plastic container holding the nail scrubber, the file and the pumice. They look communal.
‘Just ask them not to cut your nails if you’re worried,’ I say.
The woman just waggles her head and says, ‘yes, file, massage, polish.’
‘No,’ says Tara, ‘I’m asking about sterilisation.’
That might confuse the woman I think. You might not get a pedicure and I don’t want to see what implements they’d bring out for that. Let’s just move on. Move on. It’s clear the pedicure tools are strangers to the dettol.
They don’t cut our nails. But I found out that oval is the shape de mode in India. For toenails. That’s just wrong right?
I walk out with red, oval toenails. Courtesy of Diana of London nail polishes. Not Nails Inc. And then we walk across the beach and by the time we get home we wonder why we bothered.