Wednesday, March 7, 2007


My Tuesday was not the stuff dreams are made of.
I was at my dentist’s office at 8 am, left at 1030; went to an oral surgeon’s office - was there for an hour, then back to my dentist’s office for another hour.




In the waiting room at the surgeon’s office I found a couple of worried looking mothers and an elderly man, also a little worried looking. Just as I got settled with a glossy magazine with some kind of sinful dessert thing on the cover, the assistant poked her head out and called for the elderly man.

Moments later an elderly lady came out and sat down next to me. She was barely settled when the girl behind the counter opened the window and addressed her, stating that her husband was concerned that she might want some water. The lady responded that yes she would like some water and caught me smiling at her. She asked me if I wanted some water too. I laughed and said No, I was fine, just thought how nice it was that her husband was worried about her being thirsty. She smiled at me and said

“Honey, that’s why I married him, he never forgets the little things”.

She got just far enough into her story for me to learn her and her husband visited Cary just after their wedding in 1961, and decided Cary was too much of a one horse town for them. As much as that amused me, knowing Cary as it is now, it's her other statement that has stayed with me all day.

The little things.

I know less than a little bit about the art of maintaining long term relationships – I’ll freely admit. Perhaps this is oversimplification. Perhaps this is just something you say to the girl in the surgeon’s waiting room reading the banana pudding recipe. I’m going to like it, no matter what the truth is. For today, I want to be naïve enough to blindly accept that maybe after 46 years of marriage it really is about making sure your wife has a glass of water, because you had a long car drive early in the morning before your doctor’s appointments.

I’ll go back to cynical and skeptical tomorrow. It can wait a day.


Roy said...

Makes sense. Most of the time, all that is going on are the little things, so, best to pay attention to them.

I think it's a form of courtesy. And courtesy I believe is the main thing after so many years.

Carmi said...

I'll be naive right alongside you. I find comfort in the simple, little things that most everyone else ignores. I don't want to be in such a rush to get there that I forget why there matters in the first place.

Besides, I miss all the in-between moments - the ones between here and there - if I rush too much. Better to slow down and bring my wife water.

Anne said...

What a sweet story. I wonder if he has a brother? :D

kenju said...

That is so sweet. After 42 years of marriage, I can safely say that mr. kenju is like that 1/2 of the time.....LOL

Biff Spiffy said...

Wonderful account of a very cool concept.

There was a guy (John Lennon) once said "Life is what happens while you're busy making other plans."

Kindness and thoughtfulness are highly underrated and underpracticed. That's what makes it so special when you spot it.

tiff said...

I can say that the little things ARE important, as long as there's not an elephant in the room about to stomp all over them.


I hope you're feeling better today!

rennratt said...

It IS mostly about the little things, to be honest.

But not the 'which way to hang the toilet paper' or 'put the seat up/down' kind.

It's about cleaning up after someone too sick to take care of themselves, carrying someone to bed mid-seizure, and yes - bringing them water.

Love is not in the grand gestures; it is in the day to day mundane that it shines its truest and its best.

Anonymous said...

I too hope you are feeling better after your trip to the dentist.