Yesterday Banjo Man had a lot of errands to do, so I convinced him to leave work early and do his errands in the early afternoon so I could go along for the ride.
I hate to keep harping about my energy levels, but I am limited to how much I can accomplish on my own. Before I can complete more than two errands, I’m longing to go home and take a nap. And that’s what I do. But it’s great fun when someone else drives and I can conserve my energy for a trip inside of a store.
We are expecting a snowy weekend with rain and sleet, so I figured this was my big chance to get out. Also I assumed I would get lunch along the way.
My friend Ruth told me that the Pagoda Inn was still doing a healthy business, so since we were in the neighborhood (having headed north for a sale on Gulf shrimp) I suggested we stop (we’d already done seven errands, though I’d spent most of them in the car) for lunch.
Banjo Man was shocked. “It’s still open???”
You see, the Pagoda Inn is where Banjo Man first told me he loved me almost fifty years ago (it was in March, 1970). We’d returned for our 25th wedding anniversary, but we hadn’t been back since, despite driving past it hundreds of times.
He kept muttering, “Fifty years? Fifty years!” all the way to the restaurant and in the parking lot and even inside the restaurant.
He was clearly suffering from the Passage of Time, which I thought was hilarious. So I kept saying, in a faux-sweet voice, “Tell me you love me.”
And then I would laugh and laugh.
This did not ease his pain.
The food was decent and I happily have tons of leftovers to pick on all weekend. Banjo Man ate everything that was put in front of him, but never stopped moaning about surreal it was that we were here fifty years ago on a romantic date.
“Well, you must have meant it,” I said as he paid the bill.
“That you loved me,” I explained, laughing. “Because we’re still together.”
“That’s true,” he admitted, cheering up a bit now that we were leaving. He picked up my to-go boxes and waited for me to put on my gloves.
“Tell me you love me again.” I couldn’t help myself.
“I love you,” he said again, tolerating my laughter. “Are you too tired to go to Walmart? I need flax.”
“That’s so romantic.”
Banjo Man thought I was joking, of course, but there is something romantic about waiting in the car while your Boyfriend Of 50 Years buys flax seed and the car smells of fried dumplings.
It’s always good to be together.