Just cause you live with a man for more than thirty years doesn’t mean you understand their thought processes or what they are pondering. They remain elusive, and mysterious beasts.
Sometimes I take note of Hub’s eccentricities, but more often than not I ignore them and they quickly pass. But this week he was not so easily ignored. Day after day, he kept saying to me, “Com’ on mom, let’s go cruising. Com’ on, Roberta, let’s crank up the car radio and go for a ride. Cruising, like we used to.”
I just turned my back on him and said, “I’m busy.” But he would not let up. Three days later he is still pestering me – “Come on, Roberta. Grab your coat. Let’s go cruising.”
By now I could see he was fixated and I was confused. Finally in exasperation after the umpteenth time that he asked me to go cruising, he snapped, “You’re so dull. You’ve lost all sense of romance.”
That confused me even more. What was the silly old fool talking about? I looked at him and said, “What is this all about? Are you suggesting you want to relive our teen years – maybe even park and listen to the radio.”
“Sure we could do that,” he said.
Now I’m beginning to feel pretty certain he’s fallen off the deep end. But I am also sick of the pestering so I finally get my coat and away we go. Motor humming, toons a-playin’ – fine music, very fine, fine enough to alleviate the chaffing of his incessant pestering for me to come cruising. And Hub is so happy – too happy – singing along with the radio.
So okay, that’s when I realized this was about the new stereo he had installed in the car. And man, did we need one. The old radio was nothing but static and a staccato of stuttering voices and alternate stations sharing the same radio dial. We’ve been listening to that crap for many years on the old radio. But still the intensity and urgency of his constant pestering made me think there was something more to this that I hadn’t zeroed in on. So they say, if you don’t know, just ask.
So, I say to Hub, “Could you just stop singing for a moment so I can ask you something? Obviously you wanted me to come cruising with you so I could listen to your new radio. But I can’t help thinking you had another reason in mind for crankin’ up the tunes and going cruising like we used to.”
“You’re bloody intuitive,” said Hub. “Certainly I had another reason. I wanted to go cruising so I could get back to practicing my singing.”
And immediately he ignored me and embedded himself in the romantic wailing of another song.