Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Days Eight & Nine: Santa Fe

We were settled in to our sweet rental cottage with its 12-inch thick adobe walls that blocked all cell reception. We were ready to be in an environment that didn't roll for five whole nights. 

 on the streets of Santa Fe
Emily says: Just try and get me back in that van!

Other than the kokopeli couch pillows, they seem to have been conservative about their southwest themed décor here, sticking to the heavy, wide-beamed wooden headboard and door frames, carved hutches and formidable coffee table. Folks favoring this style probably didn't move very much, I thought, and if they did, their friends might require a bit more than pizza and beer. Indeed, this style comes from a time before a lot of migration, uprooting, separation from family. A different time than now.

Isaac was engaging me in one of those six-year-old battles of rationale where no one wins and at least one person usually ends up in tears: “But you said...” “No, what I said was...” “But that doesn't make any sense!” “Sorry.” “But you said...” Hold on. It's gonna be a long ride.

He gets it from his dad. No accounting for circumstances.

Mike was due home shortly from, mercifully, just a half day of conference meetings after something like an 11-hour day the day before. I stepped outside to call him and left a message to see if he might find some tortilla chips along his short walk home that we could have for lunch with guacamole – the makings of which we already possessed. A few minutes later I got a text: “Looking for chips.” I felt an oddly familiar twinge, but tried to ignore it.

As it got later and we got hungrier, I had to wonder about the wisdom behind my request. My husband is the kind of person that takes my words very seriously. He is nothing if not literal. On the surface, it's a lovely quality. One could cheer this quality; or, one could starve waiting for chips.

Mike is the guy who arrives three days later, chip bag crushed to his tattered shirt, sunbaked and sweating, beard grown in.

“I had to hitchhike to Texas, but I got 'em!!”

“Why on earth would you spend three days hitchhiking to Texas??!”

A pallor of innocence and exhaustion would cross his countenance. He'd hold up his hands in askance. “You wanted chips,” would come my answer.

Applying logic in these incidents is only like putting water on a gasoline fire.

Just recently I had a dream. In it, Mike and I were on a bus and we were due to be married soon. I told him I'd like to get married right away. Before I knew it, the driver had pulled us over and was beginning our wedding ceremony. “We are here to join Mike and Rhonda in marriage,” he said with a smile. “Is this our wedding?!” I asked Mike. “Yeah, you said you wanted to get married right away.” “What would make you think I wanted to get married on a bus??” “You said right away!” “He doesn't even know my name!”

People were starting to get angry because they weren't getting to their stops. “You said you wanted to get married right away!” Mike protested again in his own defense. “My name is not Rhonda!!”

This is exactly the kind of thing that happens to us. He thinks he is doing all he can to fulfill my every need, never noticing how circumstances may call for adaptation, never stopping to take into account the extraneous and absurd factors making his continuation along the original path impractical or even harmful. If the road to hell really is paved with good intentions, my husband has a pitch fork with his name on it.

Always good to get a refresher course on the old wherever-you-go, there-you-are theme. Patterns do not change easily. Monterey. Santa Fe. Here we were.


Rita said...

We all have our endearing/maddening crazinesses, don't we?
Never thought about moving furniture like that before. You're right, of course.
Love Emily up so high. I am SO glad you all got her back!!
Does Isaac feel any better at all?
I have been following you, of course, though I do need the reminder to comment.
Love and peace,

Daryl said...

So ... did you get the chips?

Susannah said...

I love guacamole so much I would just grab a spoon and dig in. As for the accommodations we each make to please another, there is always a double edged sword hidden somewhere in there. Hopefully you can use that sword when things start to look like a gordian knot.

I love the pictures, the heavy furniture, Emily perched, the streets of Santa Fe. Keep it all coming!

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