After nearly four months of travel, I think it’s time for a haircut. This photo of me in my rented apartment in Istanbul, Turkey earlier today is the last picture I’m going to take before going tomorrow and getting my head shaved.
I shave my head when traveling for three main reasons.
1) A shaved head is easy to maintain. I don’t have to brush my hair in the morning, apply styling gel or worry about what my hair looks like each day. I simply wake up and go! It’s super easy and I like that.
2) Shaving my head enables me to grow my hair out for several months before I need to get it cut again. It’s been nearly four months since my last haircut (which I did myself at home in the United States back in April) and it will likely be another four months or more before I cut my hair again. I’ll probably spend less than $20 USD on haircuts for the entire year.
3) Finally, I shave my head because it feel like a new beginning. I think Alastair Humphrey’s explains it best in his new book, There Are Other Rivers:
Cutting my hair is partly pragmatic and partly symbolic. It’s about leaving things behind. It’s a new start. It’s a simple indicator, as the hair begins to grow back, of how long I have been on the road. It’s a reminder that I am going away to simplify things. Going where vanity and fashion are irrelevant and only personal performance is important. And it is a demand to myself to toughen up again and to stop taking myself too seriously.