Time Passages

It's after 6:30 in the evening and our beautiful fall morning has morphed into an evil dark and rainy night.  I'm sitting here at my computer, surfing the internet, and waiting for my husband to come home from work. If I had a dollar for all the hours I've spent waiting for this man during the past 38 years, I know I could retire to Newport Beach and live the high life.

I'm one of those pathologically prompt people  - I arrive places way too early, just to make sure I'm not late. My dear husband, on the other hand, is not of that ilk.  He waits as long as possible before getting ready to embark on any journey.  Back in the early 1970's when we started dating, his scheduled arrival times were always "between" two numbers, usually within a 30 minute window.

"I'll pick you up between 7:00 and 7:30," he'd say when he called to arrange a date to dinner. "I'll be there between 8:00 and 8:15," he'd promise, when I asked him to drive me to school in the morning. So there I'd sit, all clean and shiny and ready to go.

And I'd wait.

And wait.

Finally, I'd hear the distinctive purr of his 1971 Mach One Mustang turning the corner.  I'd dash to the mirror for a quick check of my hair, rush out the door, and run to the curb so I could jump in the car before he had a chance to turn into the driveway and waste more precious time.

After we were married and he started working, I waited even more.  Seventy hour work weeks were not unusual for young automotive engineers, and he was one to make sure every "i" was dotted, and every "t" was crossed before he left the job site.  I spent a lot of time peering out the window for a glimpse of his car turning down our street.  Sometimes he could call and give me an estimated time of arrival, but mostly I was left to wait and wonder.

Fast forward 35 years, and I'm still waiting. Now at least, I get text messages with updated stats on ETA and drive time progress. I pass the waiting time with Facebook conversations and blog hopping. I get dinner into various stages of preparation, so that I can assemble it quickly when he finally arrives.

And when I hear the automatic garage door start to roll open, I run to the mirror and quickly check my hair.

It's a good thing he's still worth waiting for.