I'm moving again. This time, it's just upstairs. I'm in the same building, I barely have to pack, and I won't even have to change my address. It is a bigger apartment, big enough for two people. Handsome Man and I are moving in together, in the apartment upstairs from where I live now.
In light of these facts, a specific story seems appropriate. It's been in my drafts folder, and it's been on my To Write About list since April. As I assess what I have, what Handsome Man has and what we share, and how they will all soon be under the same roof, it seems like the time to write about some specific objects and the events surrounding them.
One day in April, my boyfriend told me about a cryptic phone conversation with his mother. It was shortly after my birthday and shortly after his parents, who had been visiting Portland, had returned home to Colorado.
"She said she's sending a package to me and to open it at your house," he told me. We wondered what it could be and what was the reason for these cryptic instructions.
It became more cryptic still.
"Whatever it is, is for both of us, but we have to keep it at your house."
The final instructions were that, "We can open it at either house, but we have to bring everything to your house and that's where it is supposed to stay."
Finally, the box arrived. It was a sunny day, so I had walked from my house to my boyfriend's instead of driving. This takes more like thirty minutes instead of five, so by the time I arrived at his door, he was overcome with impatience. Two giant boxes waited on the table.
One box was actually for someone else in the house, but this had me temporarily confused.
I was directed to the correct box. "Let's open it!"
Inside the box was paper, for padding. We moved it aside and found another box.
We opened the second box. Again, more padding. We rapidly tore through it, hurling it around the living room. We found...
Even more quickly, we tore into the third box, expecting to find a fourth box buried within. Instead, we found dishes!
Beautiful dishes, in red and white to match my kitchen. With a red and white serving platter to use and to hang on the wall when not in use. Plus two beautiful wine glasses and two tall Tom Collins glasses.
I was nearly speechless, so surprised by this generosity.
"What's Spanish Fly?" I asked, reading the label on the Tom Collins glasses.
Handsome Man was speechless now.
"Is it some kind of drink?" I asked.
It is not. Handsome Man directed me to the Wikipedia page. One of his roommates had joined the conversation at this point. After we both read the Wikipedia page, his roommate asked, "Why would your mother send that to you?"
"I bet she didn't see that," Handsome Man answered. "She must have just saw that they were red and thought the zipper was cute and didn't read what it said."
On Easter Sunday, Handsome Man's mother called. The subject of the glasses came up. I heard Handsome Man say, "It's something to get you turned on."
At that point, one of his roommates peeked into the room. "Are you still on the phone with your mother?" she asked.
She was incredulous.
Soon, he got off the phone. "It was what I said. When she brought them home, my father said, 'Why did you buy that for Sarah and Handsome Man!?'"
Apparently, after learning what Spanish Fly is, Handsome Man's mother decided to send the red zipper Tom Collins glasses to us anyway.
I would have done the same thing.