(Author’s note: As I did, you may need to go back and reread the three previous posts because this post is part of a series so references will be made and memories aren’t what they used to be.)
It is coming up to the traditional New Year Celebration welcoming 2007. In fact it is the eve of that day and Elisabeth and I have had more than one interaction. After the successful first date, she spent Christmas in Idaho. We talked on the phone for hours at a time (large cellphone bill). We talked about her family and mine; we talked about cats, cars, and Minnesota; we talked about my back and how much it hurt; we talked a lot, which is a theme in our relationship.
(This is a side note as indicated by the parentheses. Talking, communication, is a good thing in a relationship. No one will argue that point, but there is also a need to just hang out and be together, in each others presence that is, without the weight of communication. Elisabeth and I are learning that and as Chad has said more than once, “You two need to chill out to the glory of God!” Anyway)
So Christmas comes and goes, I spend it mostly alone, Elisabeth with her mom. We make plans to hang out some more upon her return and I get this brilliant idea to take her up to Whidbey Island to get firewood at Lakeside. I figure I am killing numerous birds with one stone: firewood, time with her, her experiencing something close to my heart, and many more. The date is set for Saturday the 30th. We have to go up there fairly early as a birthday party for Sally (I think?) is planned for that evening. I am excited, I think she was too.
The trip starts of well, I thought, but ends very difficultly.
(Ok, so this post is growing and I am realizing that there are many details that need to be addressed. I think this is because historical reference doesn’t allow me to leave out what at the time seemed like unimportant details, but today mean a lot. So I am now cutting it into two, but let me finish this thought.)
During the outing, there is much heart ache. Elisabeth is beautiful, she loves beautiful things, and desires beauty around her. I would barely know beauty if it hit me like a ton of bricks. These two facts have contributed to much misunderstanding. Take my clothes. I don’t, or didn’t, dress well. Match? What? You mean different shades of green don’t go well together? Cargo pants are out? Since when? What is wrong with my long sleeved turtlenecked t-shirt, I have had it for almost 10 years now? Needless to say, I didn’t look good that day. I have since changed my wardrobe, cargo pants are gone. I could also tell you about locking my keys in my car while on the ferry, but that only solidified what was already a lousy date.
The end result was that on the drive home that afternoon, Elisabeth and I decide that I wouldn’t be going to the dinner. We needed some time apart, already. What would happen after that was anybody’s guess. At least that is what I (an idiot) said, “I will call you when I call you.”
It is the following day, New Year’s Eve. We have no plans to see each other again. But that isn’t the whole story…