Where I get my grooming on

#83 Happiness

I travel every now and then to the township of Khayelitsha. It is not far from my home in Cape Town - but Cape Town is hardly Africa, and this is where I go to remind myself that I am actually on this continent. Besides that, I have another excuse: it’s where I get my grooming on. In my case this should be a very quick process, but my barber at Akon barbershop, Zuko the Zulu, spends at least 45 minutes attacking the small platoon on my head - white guys with limp, stringy hair are a challenge; more so if you’re thinning out like me. After I'm done, I pay to have one of the kid's hair done. It makes me feel good and their moms are always happy when they get back home with a new style. Then I head home through Khayelitsha with the sound of Akon and electric blades buzzing in my head. For all the squalor and destitution, I love this place because the people have more character and sense of community than most. I always feel incredibly welcome, I visit as many people as I can in the barbershops, bars, outdoor restaurants, cafés and sometimes I just poke my head in a doorway to someones home and I'm invited in. I'm always happier for the experience. But for all the barbers here, I’ll keep giving Zuko my business as long as there is hair on my head, which I hope lasts longer than anticipated.