When you think of Sedona, spirituality, red rocks and natural beauty come to mind–but a tattoo parlor?
After a long day of souvenir shopping and coffee breaks, the clouds just wouldn’t let go of the red rocks, and by the end of the day, the sky turned angry.
My friend Inge and I, drove back to our hotel room to rest for a while before dinner. I took a quick shower, placed my tired body on the queen size bed when the phone rang.
“Sonia, I found a tattoo parlor. Want to come with me?”
“Sure,” I said, more out of curiosity than anything else.
The streets were dark and wet, adding ambiance to a freaky night. I programmed the address on our GPS, which started barking commands and finally shut up, when Inge pulled up on a gravel driveway. No lights were on but tucked away in a corner, was a “Tattoo” sign and an arrow pointing to a back door.
“Think it’s open?” I asked.
“Let’s knock,” she said.
The door creaked open and a woman greeted us. Her warm smile made me relax, and I couldn’t take my eyes off her skin. Her arms, upper chest and back were covered in black and colored tattoos. A couple of guys heard us speak and came out from a kitchen next to the operating room with different sheets of tattoo patterns, covering the white walls.
“I’d like to get a tattoo with ‘love’ in Japanese characters,” Inge said.
“Show me what size you’d like and where,” the woman asked.
One of the guys pointed to his forearm which had the exact tattoo, she wanted.
After Inge settled on a stool, her skin disinfected, and the tattoo machine ready to start, I covered my eyes so as not to see her pain when the needles poked her upper right shoulder blade.
Inge remained calm. She said it didn’t hurt and that next time she wanted to get the ‘peace’ sign tattooed.
We stopped at “Safeway” on the way back to our hotel. Since rain pelted down, I ran inside to get some disinfectant cream for Inge, and a bottle of Chardonnay for us to share. I needed a glass of wine, probably more than Inge did, after watching her get the tattoo.
The following morning, Inge felt fine, the tattoo looked very black with its fresh ink, and we headed off to a small village with something I’d never seen before: furniture made out of rocks. The chairs were just as comfortable as a normal chair.
Have you ever had a tattoo? Do you want one? If yes, why? If no, why not?