The marrow of a strong marital relationship lies in shared and remembered laughter. I am the recipient of many Epic gifts in this way because the Irish Redhead and I have the same sense of humor. Some might call it an odd sense of humor. In any event, one facet of my SoH is that bored M.Lane has a highly refined ability to entertain himself. Particularly on the road. Particularly a long way out on the road.
Ten years ago in San Francisco, for example. I was on a business trip and found myself staying a day after the rest of my party went home. It was a beautiful day and I decided to walk around this wonderful city and head to China Town. After wandering past the twentieth little store selling what looked like dried, skinned chickens, I started thinking of ways to enhance the experience.
Now, I admit, I have always had a bit of a fascination with Tonya Harding. As I strolled about in China Town it occurred to me that it would be a kick to have someone teach me how to say "Do you know where Tonya Harding is?" in Chinese. A willing, although mystified, older woman helped me out with a phrase I could not repeat now to save my life. Thus armed, I spent some highly diverting time asking random people if they could locate the only notorious figure skater in history.
The reactions I got were hilarious. One fellow in a little shop produced a Harding trading card for my perusal but that was as close as I got to the real item. I would have liked to meet her and have a drink or two. I would not have wanted to get her mad at me. When I got back to the hotel and told the Irish Redhead of this adventure she laughed so hard she dropped the phone.
A decade passed. Last week I found myself in San Antonio, Texas. A place new to me and one which I greatly enjoyed. In a free spot of time, I went to tour The Alamo which was very interesting. I had previously sent a text message about my location to the I.R. since she is also very interested in history and in historical places. I had been to a magnificent Mexican restaurant the previous evening and had once again become aware of my rather significant deficit in Spanish which I had also mentioned to the I.R. A few minutes after the start of my Alamo tour, text messages with useful Spanish phrases began arriving on my phone. Such as "Do they sell beer at the Alamo?" [No. Pity.]. "Where is the bathroom at the Alamo?" And, then, this...
Donda esta Tonya Harding en el Alamo?
Now it was my turn to laugh so hard I dropped my phone. We were many miles apart. But very close. Retain the laughs. The funny moments. Even if odd. Approaching our twenty fourth wedding anniversary we still laugh loudly. And a lot. The marrow of strength, indeed.
Post-script: Yes, I asked. No, she wasn't at the Alamo. I read today that TH has married, settled down, and had a baby. I wish her peace and a long history of shared laughs with her husband. She certainly owes herself some quietude.
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