I wasn’t interested neither in the price, nor in the quality. Just entered and asked for a French manicure. I had just started a new job and I had some serious qualms about my performance. My previous job was a total nightmare.
It was just when she grabbed my hand to start the procedure, when I realised I am in a gypsy beauty salon, in the very heart of Sofia. It was crammed with people, so there was no room for prejudice. Religious icons & amulets were hanging all over the place.
The manicurist caressed my hand and said ‘God… he knows his business well’.
‘Sorry, what?’, I replied startled by her words.
‘I see you’ve suffered a lot… but you must forgive.’
‘Maybe’, I reluctantly agreed to put an end to this inappropriate topic. I though ‘Great. Just got rid of the religious fanaticism in Malta to experience the new wave of Gypsianity in Bulgaria.’
‘I know that God exists! For example… I have a client who went to the US. She suddenly thought about me and bought me nail polish. It turned out that there’s no such nail polish all over Europe! It is an ultra, mega quick-drying nail polish. And then tell me there’s no God! Of course he exists. He pointed her to choose this particular nail polish out of all that were available. And I thank Him!’
‘Yeah… maybe God is busy with other.. a bit more serious deeds.’
‘Oh, no, He takes care of the small things, and the big things, too! Two years ago He saved my mother from cancer. And I thank Him for that!’
Suddenly an elderly lady approached and told me, ‘It’s true, God exists!’. Then she pinched the manicurist and the two of them started laughing and exchanging some internal jokes.
‘This is my mother! And I thank Him. He saved her, so that we can tease each other!’
‘I really doubt this was his exact aim’, I thought to myself.
One hand was ready. My eyes were still tearing up with anxiety.
‘You must forgive. Who has hurt you was a bad person, but you surely can’t live with rage.’
I started hearing her. I thought I must be completely desperate and insane to even consider taking religious advice from a gypsy manicurist.
‘But you must look for God. He’s a gentleman, he won’t impose himself.’
‘You talk about Him as if you know him… personally.’
‘Of course I do. I sing in the church choir, I watch religious TV programmes, I even read the Bible once.’ She started jotting down some book titles and religious materials which she insisted I must take a look at.
I felt really sad I had to go. Although I was derisive at times, the manicurist did make me feel better. The focal principles in which I believed were all mentioned – the hope, the forgiveness and the ability to open one’s heart when one had been hurt. I smiled at her with understanding.
‘How much do I owe you?’
While I was putting on my jacket my eyes ran over the price list.
‘French manicure € 5′.
I went out of the gypsy beauty salon laughing out loud.
Maybe the price list only showed the basic price, minus the religious advice. God really watches over the nail polish & the French manicure……