Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Hair (07/04/19)
TITLE: Bonding Time
By Ken Grant
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One of my clearest memories was a day when we were standing inside the barbershop talking and waiting for a chair to open up. Suddenly, a large bang was combined with the front window shaking violently. As we rushed outside, we saw that sadly a bird had flown into the window not realizing that it was not open space and had died instantly. It was a lesson for a young man that life could be fleeting and that death, even unexpected death, was part of the experience that we call life. Most of us went back inside, but someone, I don't remember who, had the unenviable task of cleaning up the dead bird and making the front of the shop presentable once again. As was always the case, life went on.
As time went on, I would occasionally ride my bicycle to the barbershop. I had quite an adventure one time, riding home, when I hit a rock in the road and fell over the handlebars and onto the hard pavement. I remember how it hurt, but worse I remember having to half-walk and half-ride home with tweaked handlebars and a bruised ego. When I got home, though, my father was able to fix my bicycle and get me back on the road. Riding by myself to the barbershop made me feel grown up, but I still enjoyed going with my father, hearing him complain that he shouldn't have to pay as much because he was going bald, and just enjoying a day with him and having nothing else to do.
My relationship with my father wasn't perfect; no relationship is. But now that he has passed on, I have those fond memories of the times we had together at the barbershop to hold onto. We were able to find common ground, the need to keep our hair from growing unruly, and that kept our relationship from falling off the rails. I now go to a hair salon to get my hair cut, but it really isn't the same. The barbershop was the place a young boy and his father could hang out, experience life, and become better people for doing so. I am a better man and a better follower of Christ for the time spent bonding over hair and I'm thankful there was a place where all of that could happen.
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