Last year, husband, Tigger the Dog and and I were driving across the country on his birthday. Husband spent ten hours driving - because he’d FIRED me as a driver - and then we spent the evening in a shoddy dog friendly motel with unenthusiastic staff in a not so safe area of Memphis. I attempted to make the motel room a cheery one with little surprise gifts and cards but it was an uphill battle in a room just off the dining room with no heat and an overwhelming smell of dog pee – not TTD’s pee by the way. Poor husband. I couldn’t even get the motel staff to wish him happy birthday.
Christmas was totally better. We were in Nashville in an actual hotel, a place we were to call home for three weeks. We spent Christmas dining on room service and eating treats Sister-in-law and Brother had surprised us with. Then we spent my birthday exploring Nashville and that evening drinking birthday champagne compliments of the hotel concierge. A good day.
And as we drank, we promised ourselves that this year, we were going to go all out. We’d set up the tree, light up the yard, cook a lovely meal and maybe even have folks over and celebrate our first year in Nashville…. But our kitchen isn’t getting installed till mid January. And, while we now have insulation in the den and the kitchen, we currently don’t have insulation in the attic, the carpet is stained with animal pee – again, and not TTD’s - and we’re using the guest bathroom sink as our kitchen sink and our laundry drying rack. There’s not really a space that says, sit down and stay awhile – unless it’s the space saying “you want to pick up a hammer and help us install the floor?”
But with all the things we’re missing here - family, old friends, a finished house, tornado free weather – we have gained time and the sense of self we were both missing. Husband is playing music daily, we both are writing and neither one of us have to manually push our shoulders down after a day at work. Or pluck our fingers out of the steering wheel after dealing with the ass hats on the freeway. Or spray paint the hair we’ve pulled out back on. We even go out nightly to see music or eat or hang out with friends instead of sitting in the TV room watching other people live, anything to not deal with the masses of crazy driving around.
Here we know our mailman by name. We know our neighbors more than to just wave at. Heck, we’re currently watching our neighbor’s African frogs for Christmas - and this is a good thing! We are making new friends and we have several ‘pet’ owls who have turned standing outside with the dog into an awesome game of Where’s Waldo.
Yes, the bugs are bigger here and the weather is more extreme but we also have bugs that light up and we can see the stars at night from the backyard and deer hang out in the shade under the tree near the tree fort. And the air is so much clearer when it’s not filled with me cussing it blue at the ass hat that just cut me off. Or me mumbling my murderous thoughts about the next-door neighbor who… well, she was just an ass. And Husband is much happier making music with people who can sing something other than show tunes and understand the importance of rhymes and descriptive verses and trucks. (I still don't get the trucks.) And the dog, well, Tigger the Dog has discovered the wonder of chipmunks and folks, there is nothing more exciting than chipmunks. She is happy.
To sum up my babble - HAPPY DAY OF BIRTH, Husband! It’s been a good year and the year to come promises to be an even better one!