Journal. 10:13 am

They warn you.  Never start with the weather.  But the rain is falling hard for the first time in long enough that the rain is new and interesting to me this morning, cold and noisy since it is almost sleet and occasionally snow, like the moment we stepped out the door for school.  I drove the kids today because I had an appointment at the edge of town in a bland suburb where, on the door of a nondescript house was a little sign above the buzzer.  Emerson Instrument Repair.  It was the second indication that I had found a gem, the first being the fact that I was required to make an appointment.  Pete keeps a neat basement shop and wears a hearing aid and a black rubber glove on his left hand.  He shows me three clarinets waiting to be shipped back to Guam.  A third affirmation.  He calls my flute "a workhorse" that will last longer than either one of us.  He assures me he can make it sound better than new, and I believe him.

I rush home to make tea.  Suddenly, I am interested in Harold Pinter.  I first heard of him when he won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 2005 and then again last year when his second wife, the biographer Antonia Fraser was promoting a memoir about their thirty-five year love affair.  She called him "uxorious," a new word to me that she defined as having excessive love for one's wife. No wonder why I had never heard of it.

My husband is not a sweet talker.  Earlier this year we got to interview each other for StoryCorps. Today, we were on Wisconsin Public Radio as they celebrate 50 years of Peace Corps service, a three minute clip from our 40 minute interview, a clip that's all too indicative, I suppose, of our relationship.  Here we have shared this vast experience together and yet we go on and on about the intimate details of a discarded spray bottle.  The man who conducted the interview did tell us that crying is a good way to get your interview on the radio.  I doubted that would happen.  But sure enough, as our time was running out, I leaned into the microphone and teared up telling my husband that going to Guatemala to visit him in the Peace Corps was the best decision I ever made. Silence.  "Now you say something nice to me," I told him.  He choked out a "Thank you."

Last week I randomly pulled a movie from the library shelf and came home to watch Harold Pinter's "The Homecoming."  My husband lasted 20 minutes.  My son declared it so boring.  But I was transfixed.  And now I'm on my Harold Pinter kick and writing a play of my own.  About marriage.  Of course, this worried my husband a bit.  "Are you just making it all up or basing it on real discussions you've had?"

A little bit of both, I tell him.  He doesn't ask which discussions nor who they were with.  He has his suspicions.

And the rain continues to fall.


  1. This is blatant husband bashing!

    -your husband

  2. You mean to tell me you actually read this blog?!