Alfter From Monday, March 1, hairdressers in NRW are allowed to open again. As a special event for two of his regular customers, hairdresser Imad Rahi from Alfter already opened his store at midnight.
The clock showed shortly after midnight on Monday morning, when it became highly busy once again in the Oedekovener salon of hairdresser master Imad Rahi: After about two and a half months of lockdown, Rahi and his son David Rahi were finally allowed to take the scissors in their hands again - like other hairdressers in Bonn and the Rhein-Sieg district. However, only two regular customers had taken a seat in the barber's chairs for the time being: Detlev Hofmeister and Theo Pinsdorf from Impekoven.
The fact that father Rahi and his son were probably among the first hairdressers in the region to start their services at this late hour had to do with a special wish: "We have a lot of regular customers and I wanted to say thank you for their loyalty in these difficult times," explains Imad Rahi. That's why he asked some of his customers to send him photos of their current hairstyles on the occasion of the reopening. "For the two who I thought needed a haircut the most, I wanted to open my store for an hour that very night as a special service." However, regular business did not start until 8 a.m. on Monday morning.
And so at midnight Hofmeister and Pinsdorf were then allowed to take their seats in the hairdresser's chairs. It was high time for both of them: "The last time I was at Imad's was shortly before he had to close his store on December 15," recalls Hofmeister, who has been a customer from the very beginning, so to speak, since Rahi opened his store in Oedekoven 20 years ago. "Since December, no one has cut my hair then either," he continues.
It had been a little longer for Pinsdorf: "I hadn't been to get my hair cut since the end of November, and even my wife didn't dare to cut my hair." When the hair then fell to the floor under the scissors of Imad and David Rahi, the mood of the two regular customers improved: "What a relief," it spontaneously escaped Pinsdorf when he looked in the mirror. And Hofmeister was also completely satisfied after David Rahi had done his work. The only thing he feared was "that now I have to show ID when I go into the office."
Admittedly, this Monday did not feel like a normal working day for Imad Rahi: "I'm already a bit excited. Especially because I'm looking forward to seeing the customers. I've never been closed this long before." There's no question that the past two and a half months of lockdown have taken their toll on the Alfter-based businessman's nerves: "I'm responsible for seven employees and the promised short-time and bridging payments haven't flowed for a long time." Only recently, he said, did he receive a first partial payment, and that despite the fact that his entire operating costs had continued to run for the months before. "That's where you get existential fears," he says. He is now hoping for the next few weeks and for business to be as uninterrupted as possible. "By the end of the month, we're already almost booked." On the subject of prices, Rahi says, "For men, they'll remain stable, but for women, we'll be hard-pressed to avoid an increase of around ten percent."
Original text: Axel Vogel
Translation: Mareike Graepel