By Mary Morony
Marriage, I am here to tell you, is a difficult business, after the fun and games of hot steamy sex has become a dim distant memory. Living together in the bonds of wedlock is so much of a challenge that most of us have children to keep ourselves so busy that we don’t notice how hard it is. Dirty diapers give way to Saturdays filled with soccer matches, lawn maintenance, birthday parties and driver ‘s ed. When budget-busting college tuitions are finally in the rearview mirror, two people get a chance, possibly for the very first time, to know each other; assuming that somehow they have beaten the odds and are still together. Finally, it is time to take a deep breath and relax into the twilight years.
For the most part, there is a very little twinkle in that twilight. Exhausted and just a little beaten down by life, most of us fall back into dull habits that are designed not to rock any boats. Mealtimes become set, as well as bedtimes. Routine becomes king. Our lives take on the color of our graying heads. It’s easier to stay at home than go out unless we always have then it’s just easier to do what we always do. Change, particularly to the routine, increasingly is viewed as a threat. I speak of this as an expert. Color me gray, dull and boring. Thank God for Hubs.
We didn’t see the eclipse the other night, but not for the lack of trying. At ten thirty-ish Hubs, having consulted the weather channel deduced that the cloud cover ended around Gordonsville. “Don’t you want to see the eclipse?” He asked, excited at the prospect of an adventure.
In bed, attired in my picnic-patterned pj’s the only color left in my drab life, I responded in my usual crabby, “No, I am already in bed.”
“There won’t be another for 30 years,” he pointed out.
“I’ll make it a point to live that long.”
“Come on,” he insisted.
Who can resist Hubs when he is so fired up about something, certainly, not I? I crawled snarling out of bed, plunking myself begrudgingly down in the passenger’s seat to drive to G-ville. The rain was steady at home, albeit light. My driver positively buzzed with enthusiasm.
Gordonsville, a mere ten miles down the road, was also socked-in. Even though some of his excitement was rubbing off, I felt duty bound to keep it to myself. “It’s raining,” I pointed out the obvious in my best Debbie Downer impersonation.
“Oh,” he said unperturbed, “it’s the other side of Gordonsville.” He completely refused to give into my glum-chumness, besides he couldn’t see my eyes roll in the dark. The other things we couldn’t see were stars or the eclipse.
On the other side of Gordonsville, all the way down Route 33 passed Louisa the cloud cover held even though the rain had stopped. Periodically we stopped and got out of the car; well, he did – I was still in my jammies – to do a star check. The car’s interior lights refused to turn off. No stars, no moon, no eclipse even at Lake Anna. By now, I had given up any pretense into being put out by my husband’s eccentricity. It was funny. He was funny. When we made our way into Orange, rain won out over clear skies. There was no eclipse on deck for us that night.
Despite being tired, and up way beyond my bedtime, I was happy and grateful to have Hubs in my life. Oh well, if it doesn’t kill you it’ll make a good story, I thought as we made our way home.
Rolling into the driveway, he said, “I’m sorry I couldn’t give you the moon.”
“So much better, so so much.”