Monday, November 21, 2011

A Tale of Two Anniversaries

So yesterday was our 19th wedding anniversary, which I've already written about here, but as Andy and I were drifting off to sleep last night, we had to chuckle about another very similar wedding anniversary, our tenth.

The week of our tenth anniversary, Andy had the opportunity to travel to Virginia to study under another highly skilled woodworker for a week. Because the trip would fall over our big day, he offered to take me with him and my folks graciously took the kids. It was incredible. I wandered historic sites with my camera while Andy sat around in the sawdust--making both of us very happy. We would meet up again at the close of every work day and go out for a nice dinner, then repeat the cycle. The weather in Virginia was gorgeous that week--perfect for exploring the area on foot--and the peak fall color added an extra special backdrop to my photos.

Leading up to that week we'd been discussing, of all things, body art. Andy wanted to tattoo his wedding band onto his finger and then not wear the ring, which could get caught in heavy machinery with devastating consequences. I appreciated his desire to not go without the visual of the marriage commitment and was honored at the idea of the tattoo--a band that can't be conveniently slipped off and deposited in a pocket if his heart were to wander.

In return, I'd been thinking about piercing my navel. At that point, I still had a fairly flat and tight belly and I thought the whole belly button ring-thing was terribly cute. He liked the idea of it, too. We had decided to go together to get both things done.

Before our trip, we had actually worked up the courage to do it on a date night and went so far as to choose a shop and drive there, only to find that their finger specialist was off for the day. I didn't want to only do half of our agreement, so we put it off. During our week alone in Virginia, however, I began to cook up another plan. Part of my exploration was photography-oriented and part of it became a quest to find a good shop that would do both his finger tattoo and my navel ring. I found the perfect place, conveniently located, clean, and with an excellent reputation.

I think our anniversary fell on a Friday night and he was finished with his woodworking as of then, so I decided to surprise him; we would go out to eat and celebrate that evening and then go get some body art on Saturday as our anniversary present since we both had the day free before we were scheduled to fly home.

But Friday didn't go as planned. Thursday night's dinner did not set well with me. Not at all. I spent Friday--our tenth anniversary--at the hotel, hunched over the toilet. It was one of those violently ill situations, friends, and I wish I could remember the name of the restaurant to have you steer clear for your own protection. It was NOT the way one might wish to spend a tenth wedding anniversary. By the time Andy got done with his woodworking class and made it back to the hotel, it was very obvious that I wouldn't be going anywhere. You know the scene.

He was hungry, though, having not had the same bad food as I had, and as we were living in a hotel, he kind of had to go out to eat. He felt terrible about leaving me, but I sent him away. He found an all-you-can-eat Chinese buffet close by and spent our tenth wedding anniversary there, by himself--not exactly the most romantic dinner.

By the next morning, the food poisoning had worked its way through my system and I felt much better, but I was still weak. I really didn't feel like letting anyone do anything to my stomach. Not at all. We laid low and did a little touring by car instead of on foot.

Now, nine years later, having spent another anniversary with a stomach bug, we never have gotten around to that body art. We just kind of lost interest, I guess. Andy has learned that finger tattoos just don't last very well because of the amount of sloughing off of skin cells on the hands. I really don't have the same tight and flat abs that I used to and don't feel a need to decorate my navel with something sparkly.

Oh, well.

No clever closing line here today. That's all, folks. I'm off to try to gather up some energy for putting together a Thanksgiving meal. This is difficult when wondering if the tiny little rumblings in my tummy mean that my turn with the stomach flu is next. Blah.


Emily... said...

Maybe not the ideal anniversary, but a story to remember! And you tell it well...just visiting today form Write it, Girl :)

martha brady said...

i just had to smile:) funny how our interests change. we have been married 43 yrs. i think back to some of the things we did early in our marriage and now. i wouldn't say that life has gotten boring, but some things just don't seem as important as they once did. life works that way doesn't it?

stacey said...

life is like that sometimes! but fun to think on the memories and realize that we have come so far!