12 - Paul

Twenty minutes before he closes - just enough time to run to the bank to get money and come back to get a haircut. "Sorry, we close at 5", he says as I glance at my watch, which reads 4:45. I ask him if he knows of another place nearby, and tells me about this place across the street. So across the street I went.

It was a typical barber shop with two guys, Paul and Johnny sitting in a couple of chairs relaxing between customers. I asked them if I could get a haircut, and Paul directed me to his chair.

He opened the shop in 1957 and bought a house around the corner a couple of years later, and has been working there ever since. Eventually having three kids, he had to move farther out of the city, as back then, it was difficult to find four bedroom houses in the city.

Most of our time together was spent in a comfortable silence, but he was extremely friendly in conversation. At first I wanted to do something to make him smile, but realized that his calm face was more suited to our interaction and just left it as it was.

Thanks for the haircut Paul, I'll be back soon!