I’ve been thinking about this for over a month now. The time has come to write about it. At the Senior Center there is a man who comes for the noon meal each day, but his wife never comes. The man has a very sad face. When he smiles, which isn’t often, he looks fine, a handsome man, really. He usually has complaints about the government and happenings in the community. He is a hunter and often talks about the animals he has killed. He also likes to talk about his automobiles.
The conversation that upset me was when he told the people at his end of the table, (I was seated in the middle, but I hear well), “The old lady wasn’t working today and she wanted to go to Erie, but she won’t drive to Erie so she wanted me to take her. Who does she think I am? A taxi?”
This upset me because he called his wife “the old lady,” and because he resented doing something to help her. I said, “No! She thinks you are a husband.” Either he didn’t hear me or he didn’t respond. Probably just as well.
I know I ran this through the filter of my own experience. I don’t like to drive to Erie alone. When I needed to get to Erie for some reason, my husband would usually take me. I doubt that he called me “the old lady,” and he didn’t complain about helping me get to Erie. If I was out around town and something happened with the car, I could call him and he would drop what he was doing and come help me. He was a husband.
And now he’s gone. I hate for this man to miss the goodness of the husband-wife relationship, the blessing of being mutually helpful and dependent on each other. Life is too short.