MyHusbandTheEngineer has a green car. He adoringly calls it a ’57 Austin Healey 100-6, BN4. I would turn it into a planter upon his demise, but he’s sunk too much money in it.
The green car has no shock absorbers (“shocks” to the intelligentsia), radio (but you couldn’t hear it over the din of the motor, anyway) or air conditioning (spoil its authenticity?!). I’ve overheard him telling admirers that I won’t ride in it because it’s either too hot, too cold, too bumpy or too noisy (or a combination of), and I am too vocal.
For his birthday, I decided to overcome his objections, prove my love and accompany him on a British car rally over the river and through the woods to California’s Filoli Gardens—and its upscale gift shop.
I did not complain.
I did not buy the $289 purse with the poodles all over it (which would have made everything right in the world).
I did not “lose it” when, just casually commenting about there being a difference between the temperature outside (106 degrees) and inside (higher), MHTE pointed at a fire extinguisher and said, “Use that.”
I did not press the “choke” button on the dashboard.
I did not eat lunch when we stopped, and I didn’t complain. I couldn’t … heat stroke.
After lunch, I did not check my e-mail on the ride to the gardens. (Actually, I did, but told him I was looking at Google maps to find our way out of the unmarked back roads where we were lost.)
When we finally found the gardens, I did not lock eyes with anyone staring at us in our matching Healey shirts. One person wouldn’t stop staring. “We’re fraternal twins; Mom still dresses us,” I smiled.
When an Aston Martin owner pulled up beside us and said, “Nice car,” I responded, “Yours has air conditioning.” “Yeah,” he said. “Trade?” I asked.
I did not hang my feet out the window to escape the blistering heat of the cockpit, even though I had been freshly pedicured for this event.
I did not tell my husband that this trip was going to cost him a lot of money when we got back.
I DID e-mail the list of upcoming Healey events to all my husband’s friends when we got home. And I’m practicing my look of disappointment for when he says to me, “Sorry sweetie, there won’t be room for you.”
By Cathy Turney
Cathy is the author of Tales of a Codependent Pet Owner and she blogs at www.ALittleBitOff.net.