Everything is just so expensive nowadays no matter where you live. I mean, when was the last time you had RM1 nasi lemak? Or pampered yourself with a visit to the hairdresser? Don’t even think about it! Skincare, hair products, clothes have gotten so expensive that I’ve just resorted to staying ugly. However, this aunty from Padang Katong, Kangar, Perlis shows us that you don’t need to set exorbitant prices for a good and satisfying service.
Teh Khai Looi, 80, who’s lovingly called Toknya, only charges Rm2.50 for a haircut. She added that in 1962 it was RM0.25 per person and now it’s at RM2.50.
“Why would I find more profit, it’s not like I can do anything with it.”
She explained that she cuts hair not for the money but just for her self-satisfaction as she will experience body aches if she stays home doing nothing. She opens her shop from 11am to 7pm and only receives a handful of customers – mostly regulars as her shop doesn’t really offer the styles other saloons offer. Teh told Harian Metro that she went to Penang in 1957 to learn the skills and worked there for 5 years. After marrying her late husband, she opened a barbershop in her house.
Teh plans to retain her prices despite other shops in the area charging RM20 to RM25 and will continue her services until they’re not needed any more. One of her customers has been getting her haircuts from Toknya for the past 27 years cause she finds Toknya to be reliable, and she hasn’t found another barber that gives haircuts like Toknya. As advice to the younger generation, Toknya advised everyone to be hardworking and to never give up easily.
In this day and age, generosity is a hard sight indeed but Toknya reminds us to always find a corner in our hearts that is giving, and nurture it.
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