July 4, 2009

One Chair Barber Shop

When the Pioneering Foochows came to Sibu in 1903 they brought three "knives" (DOH) and "three heads" (TOU)which truly helped them to survive their pioneering days.

One of the knives was the "tieh doh" or barber's razor. Indeed this Foochow barber in Miri whom I know of (his shop is called "one chair barber shop" by us as he operates on his own) has been able to bring up a great family. His eldest son has graduated and is already working in Canada. His second son went to Tukau Chinese Primary School which my son also attended for four years is now a good and able working adult.

Since my son wanted a crew cut of the traditional style this barber would be the best man to go to. I grabbed the opportunity to go along with him with dual purposes : one to be with my son and the other to write about "the one chair barber shop" in Taman Jade Manis.

This is the leather strap which sharpens and cleans the razor.

The comfortable foot ledge or foot rest of the old fashion barber's chair which can recline at different angles fantastically.

Number Four - for a crew cut.

Old style soap and water and brush for the lather. You can bring your own foam or soap and lather set if you like.

Horizontal position for a good old fashion shave.

Happy and clean shaven. A few pats and a nice face towel can do wonders for the soul!! His towels are always fresh and crisp. Each client gets a freshly washed one. So you can be assured of his standard of cleanliness. However you can bring your own towel if you like.

Better friends after a good shave and hair cut. Barbers are often good listeners and kind people.

If you are ever in Miri for a visit and hoping for a pampering and a good rest ...do spend half an hour or more with this barber and have a clean shave or hair cut in his one and onlyh chair. Or ask for Bolkiah Barber Shop if you happen to be lost in Miri. He speaks English and Bahasa Malaysia besides Foochow and Mandarin of course.

Would you go for a traditional hair cut and shave? It will only cost you RM11.00


Daniel Yiek said...

This is a good post using pics interlaced with words to convey a story

Sarawakiana@2 said...

Thanks Daniel. Are you having a good weekend?
How is the HINI scourge?

My son and I had just come back from Brunei where most shop assistants are wearing face masks now. But on the whole everything is under control in Miri.

Just take a lot of Vit C and lian teh.

Watt said...


In KL normally we go to a mamak barber for a crew cut. Infact, we could get just any kind of hair stye that we request at mamak barber c/w shoulder massage..& they are the cheapest barber in town.

I must say that the boy on your picture has grown up into a fine & handsome young man.

Sarawakiana@2 said...

Thanks for the comments about mamak. Most older guys like mamak barbers and for the good price too.
I am glad he is slimming down and looking good. I am also praying every day that he is upright with a great sense of justice.
It takes a village to bring up a child. (African saying)

Anonymous said...

Mothers usually bring their boys to nice barbers who are understanding and reasonable for their early haircuts. Later when the boys become young adults they will make their own choices. I know some older men who stick one barber throughout their whole life.

What say you?

Sarawakiana@2 said...

Yes I know of many people who stick to their life long barbers...this is indeed very interesting.

jus said...

Once in a while I will get my crew cut from this nice gentleman. He has nice comics for me to read too....

Sarawakiana@2 said...

Hi Justine
I am not surprised some young people also like to visit Bolkiah Barber Shop. He is really a very humble and kind person. I am sure his clientele includes people of all races!

Anonymous said...

It must be good feeling for a mother to be able to accompany her son to the barber's. Very rare bonding indeed. My teenage son likes to go with friends and hang out on their own. Not even father can take him to a familiar barber. He already wants to have some "freedom". Wow!! Jane

Sarawakiana@2 said...

Dear Jane
Thanks for dropping by. All kids are different in their nature. Some are close to their mothers some are not. Some are close to all their grandparents! But most important of all our children must be our support at all times in the same way we supported them when they were young. As we live out our lives together we must support each other to the best of our abilities with God's help! God bless.

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