Kids, remember last summer when I wrote a post about the time I was supposed to go and get a pedicure? If you need a refresher, here’s a link to that very post. Come back when you’re done.
Just as it was last year, our church just finished our second annual kids camp. It was pretty much awesome. If you’re interested in seeing how those evenings went, I encourage you to click over to the Northstar Church website and take a look at our blog posts/videos documenting the fun we had. Seriously, go and watch the videos. I’ll wait…
Are you back? Good, we can continue. Again, as it was last year, the kids ministry staff, consisting of mostly women… and me… decided that a great way to treat ourselves after a week of hard work was to go out and get pedicures. Unlike last year, we didn’t just show up someplace expecting them to accommodate us. No, we had reservations this time. And so, no matter what, we were definitely getting our feet worked on this time.
Now, I mentioned in last year’s post that I had never had a pedicure before. That status had not changed between then and now. It’s not that I think there’s anything wrong with getting a pedicure, it’s just that I’m not sure how comfortable I would have been showing up someplace by myself to have this act performed upon my toes. So I knew that, if I were to ever get a pedicure, it would be because a group of people allowed me to tag along.
Having now experienced a pedicure first hand, I can confidently say that I will never, ever, ever put myself through that brand of torture again.
Wait. That makes it sound like it was a painful experience. Like I didn’t enjoy it. Well, I guess there’s some truth to the not enjoying it part. But it wasn’t painful. It’s just that… well… how do I put this delicately and in a way that will not encourage my vast audience to mock me relentlessly? I’m ticklish. There. I said it. I’m ticklish. And I don’t care who knows it. Just know that if you try and exploit this information, you may get kicked in the face.
It all started out very nice. They put my feet in some very warm water. That part didn’t suck. Then this girl comes over and starts clipping my toenails. This is something that I don’t even like doing to myself. Even when I do it, I’m always afraid I’ll go just a little too deep and snag the skin that’s still attached to the nail. So, to allow a strange woman to do this to me involved a great deal of trust on my part.
I appreciated her attempts at small talk as she tried to help me relax. See, she could tell that I was having difficulty relaxing because I was trying to curl my toes into little fists at the ends of my feet. I guess that’s not a sign that relaxation is happening. I wonder if all first-timers are as stressed out about getting their feet worked on as I was.
Anyway, we made it through the toenail portion of the afternoon and she asked me what color I wanted. I laughed because I really couldn’t tell if she was being serious by asking me this question. I feel like I took a big enough leap just getting the pedicure. Walking out with polish on my nails, I think, would have been something entirely different and would have opened the doors to conversations that I just don’t think would be necessary.
After the nails came the callus treatment. If I had it to do over again, this is the part I would probably not get done. After soaking my feet for a while in some kind of jelly, the girl proceeded to aggressively scrape my feet with what I can only describe as a cheese grater. And when she was done with that, she went on to use a pumice stone in the same spots that she’d just shredded. How did she not break the skin?!
But this was the part where being ticklish really worked to my disadvantage. The girl (I’m sorry, I don’t know her job title… nail technician? podiatrist? foot soldier?) seemed genuinely afraid that I was going to kick her in the face. But, again, I appreciate her understanding. She stated that she’s far worse than I am and never gets pedicures herself for this very reason. I mean, as a foot clan warrior, I assume she can effectively give herself pedicures. But she doesn’t get them from other people. She said she actually did kick someone in the face once. She walked away from her encounter with me unscathed.
I, however, walked away with smooth feet and slightly healthier toes. I was a little self conscious about what my feet looked like before going in. Point blank, I asked my foot soldier if I had the most disgusting feet she had ever encountered. She said no… but I guess she could have been lying. But I’ll believe her. After all, I trusted her enough to use sharp instruments on my toes that I’m not sure I would even trust myself with.
As I walked out of the nail salon with the rest of the kids ministry staff, they asked how I liked it. I was honest with them, saying that it was nice to cross it off my bucket list (even though pedicure was not really something on my actual bucket list), but that I’ll likely never do it again. Then they said that I’d really notice the difference that night when I was barefoot again. Because that’s when I’d realize how smooth my skin from the ankle down had become.
“Oh, no,” I said, “Now I won’t be able to scratch my leg with my heel in the middle of the night!”