I'm not sure I can do this little story justice. But here goes.
Did I tell you the Mystery Woman and I were high school sweethearts fifty years ago?
But she married someone else (as did I) when we were in college. For the next 30 years we had no contact but I sorta kept track of her through mutual friends. She got divorced about eight years before I did. When I learned of her divorce, my first reaction was: did she ask about me? She didn't.
After my divorce, I worked up my courage to call her. Shazam. The friendship was still there. For the next 20 years, we would correspond, talk on the phone and send goofy flamingo presents in the mail. A couple of times, she came to Texas. Once, she brought her long-time companion and they stayed at my place.
About a year ago, we really reconnected when we discovered we were both on the available list at the same time, for the first time. And we've been inseparable ever since. Here's the thing -- everytime I look at her, I see the 17-year-old inside.
The Grand Adventure now includes retirement living in Texas and Minnesota where we outrun the sun. This way, we escape the harsh summers and winters, enjoy a blazing fall and bask in two springtimes since the growing season starts earlier in Texas. I've re-ignited her love of really spicy Tex-Mex and BBQ and she is teaching me to love walleye.
She was diagnosed with cancer before I was. Hers was breast cancer, double mastectomy. Mine was colon but the surgeon caught it early. Thankfully, both of us are now cancer free. I sport a pacemaker and a defibrillator. She doesn't.
We laugh a lot. But we always did. We accidentally wear the same color clothes so often that people think we're on a bowling team. Bicycles, gently ridden, are a new passion.
The Mystery Woman is no dummy. She has written four books on education so her mind is often busy. That breeds quirks. I've only co-authored one book, so I'm not so quirky.
Have I told you how she gave spooning a bad name? The first time we did dishes, she unceremoniously dumped all the knives and forks into the silverware drawer. Unsorted. That means I have to search through the clutter every time I need a spoon.
"I have more important things to do with my time," seems like an omnibus excuse.
Later, if you're interested, I'll explain why she keeps the TV channels written on a 2 x 4 block of wood. I told you she was quirky.