Monday, November 16, 2009

R & R & R

David and I haven’t had a night away from the kids since last winter and after the rigors of buying an apartment and moving and starting both kids in new schools, we’ve been pining for some R and R, and hey, an extra R for romance wouldn’t hurt. So we convinced my parents to take their darling grandchildren for the weekend.

On Friday, we loaded them into my parents’ car with accompanying loveys and favorite bedtime books and then we wasted no time and proceeded directly to Jack the Horse Tavern for dinner by candle light and some stimulating argument. Yes, David and I find that whenever we have some alone time, the very first thing we must get out of the way is a big ole’ fight. There’s no way to bypass the argument and take a shortcut directly to intimacy and affection – we just have to fight a bit and then we’ll be as happy as honeymooner for the rest of the weekend.

One getaway, we treated ourselves to a two hour argument of private versus public school, just for the sake of fighting since we agree public school is best for our kids and also, our only choice. Another time we argued all night about why he was facebook friends with his highschool girlfriend and how she fact that she wrote emails from her husband’s account meant, to my eyes, that she was oppressed and lacking a self separate from her identity as wife and mother.

This weekend, we didn’t focus on one particular subject. I just had a glass of prosecco which got me in a fighting mood – that’s the effect alcohol has on me these days – and then I acted the part of a miserable magpie for the rest of the night, including during the performance of The New Electric Ballroom at St. Ann’s Warehouse, which my sweet husband had gotten tickets for

“Oh God, I hope this isn’t another piece of depressing theater,’ I moaned.

“Well, its Irish drama,” replied David, “So chances are, yes.”

My single sentence sum-up: One of the most brilliant scripts I’ve heard in a long time, impeccably performed and so freaking dismal and bleak you want to bang your head on a brick wall as soon as its over just to feel some relief.

David and I come back to our blissfully quiet apartment and though it seemed I would pass out instantly from the glass of prosecco I was not about to let the evening pass us by without some romance. So I put on my most raggedy-ass baggy fleece PJS, threw myself face down on the couch and lay motionless for five minutes to work up the energy and then I said, with my face still buried in a couch cushion: Wanna have sex?”

David laughed: “Are you joking?”

You shouldn’t ask a mean drunk such a question: “I don’t know WHY you are LAUGHING,” I replied, “You should be jumping for JOY!”

“You’re lying facedown on the couch like a person in a coma,” he countered.

“Oh so I’m supposed to SEDUCE you now?” I shrieked the picture of allure.

I persuaded him to my position, which was a good thing because shortly afterwards the man fell ill. Gastrointestinal kind of ill. By the next morning, he was fully in the throws of a nasty stomach bug. So no trip to the Berkshires as planned.

But hey, who needs the Berkshire’s stunning fall foliage when you can clean your apartment and pay bill all day while your husband moans on the sofa and watched Real World marathons?

“I can’t believe you’re sick now and we can’t have another romantic evening,” I complained.
“You call that a romantic evening?” David said.

“Well, I was only so mean because I thought I had a second night to make it up to you!” I reasoned.

“Let that be a lesson to you,” he offered, none too kindly.

When we called to check in with my parents, they told us my grandmother and Primo were both upchucking, too. Nothing like thinking of your child vomiting in someone else's bathroom to make you feel guilty and awful.

But by Saturday night, David was on the mend so I dragged him to see a movie with me – New York, I Love You. Here’s my single sentence sum-up of that one:

Someone should have forced most of the directors to stretch themselves a bit and find new devices, beyond the quintessential lighting of the cigarette, for characters who are strangers to meet: say, waiting for the bus or the funicular or the light to change, riding the subway or an elevator, serving on jury duty, getting a hot dog from the vendor. Leave the compulsive cigarette lighting to the Parisians.

But it did put us in the mood for baguettes and coffee in a bowl, so Sunday morning, with David fully recovered, we brunched at a nearby Pain Quotidian and after a decent night’s sleep (would have been better had Omaha steaks not called at 9am) and no alcohol anywhere in sight, we chatted merrily and cozies up.

Mission R & R & R accomplished. By hook or by crook, baby.