around friday i divided the time chuck would be gone into 12 hour, slightly more manageable increments, of which there were 13. i can only assume this is the former cross country runner in me. breaking his trip into laps. sweating, grunting, bleeding, swearing and limping my way toward a finish line. i zeroed in on sunday afternoon when he would return in fewer increments than he had been gone. when i went to bed sunday night i was able to think: when i wake tomorrow, i can think "chuck comes home tomorrow."
perhaps i'm coming off neurotic. eh. you're probably right. i'm the edgar allan poe of romance, minus all the alabaster and ravens, but including sheet rock and floor boards vibrating with my own heart beat.
i'm going to up the ante. include "needy" and "codependant" to my personality profile.
first: get my car washed, inside and out. my car is a graveyard for cashed packs of cigarettes, water bottles, out of season clothing. it exhausts me.
pulling into the london road car wash, i remind myself that the entire concept of paying $11.25 to have 17 teenaged boys spit shining my civic is against my religion. my mom is one of those people who gets her car washed once a week. i'm one of those people who thinks "eff that. it's just going to get dirty again." (this is also why sometimes i go three days without a shower).
my greeter masks his disdain quite well.
"you can throw away everything that isn't a book, cd, clothes, or ..." i tell him.
"i know. i do this everyday."
"kitchen appliance. ... and, um. sorry."
shiny cars file through, but no civic. more cars. still no civic. i look behind the building to see if they are just burning my car. finally the civic.
i do not tip them because i assume there is no communication between the front crew -- who bore witness to the backseat massacre -- and the front crew.
while chuck has been gone, my dreams had a common theme:
a complicated or broken cell phone or becoming alarmed when i realize i don't know his phone number.
chuck whisking in and out of rooms, cheerful, but with no time for chatter. on the go go go.
us searching like crazy for a place to make out and growing increasingly frustrated.
it doesn't take a dream interpretation guru, which i am, to understand any of this.
chuck calls with a sort of airport havoc that means adding another just-more-than-half-increment to the whole lot of increments. apparently no one told his online travel website that i'm not good with delayed gratification. i used to open my christmas presents while they were still hidden in my parents closet. it's hard to open a christmas present that is still on the west coast.
"ughhhh ..." i tell him. "by now i just want to drive out there and get you."
"if it is at all possible, that may take longer than my flight," he says.
mocassin's overhears me on the phone with my cousin, rearranging plans. my cousin is explaining things that involve traffic-less back roads and free parking and spare keys. i'm scribbling away. when i hang up, mocassins looks at me incredulously:
"did i just hear you making plans?" he asks.
"um, ah. bah. oh. um," i stammer. "yes?"
"but they aren't like plan-plans," i say. "they're more like just kinda plans."
"uh-huh," he says.
"and besides. look how well i adjusted to new plans. if these had been actual plans, like plans your kind of people make, i'd have freaked out and been unable to deviate!" i stand up for myself.
"uh huh," he says.
whatever. i have more errands. instead of cleaning up my life over the course of chuck's trip, i've decided to revisit my old ways -- days as a slothful mess of drool then do everything at the last minute.
and i do it all reaaaaaalllllyyy slowly to fill the half-increment.
today is plant-watering day at jcrew's. the day i promised to go into her apartment and satiate the needy. i'd had big plans to do some serious damage in this apartment. instead i just make a number two in her bathroom, steal a handful of starbursts and a pack of gum, season four of newlyweds.
but it is the number two i'm most proud of. i even left the door open when i went.
now. about five more hours to go.