Sunday, May 08, 2011

Travel Tales (#4)

Since Michael is absent all this week and next, I will try to fill his large shoes, walk the walk, blog the blog, blah blah blah. It is also a good time to say a few things about my other half.

Mike and I have just returned from the Caribbean. Following in the footsteps of our past trips, we fell into our usual groove. We travel well together; we travel so well together that, if not for the fact that our bodies would soon roll over and play dead to avoid the continual onslaught of sugar, msg's, autolyed yeast and high fructose corn syrup, we might just chuck it all and cruise nonstop. We are already debating Iceland and Scotland if not next month then next year for sure, Germany and Switzerland in September is a given, as is another island jaunt this October (love those Halloween cruises!). Anyhoo. . . . a few thoughts on this last voyage.

My trip began like a lamb; Michael’s...not so much...more like a lion. Our second night out from Ft. Lauderdale, the hubby developed an acute case of the "pv's" (that's projectile vomiting for those of you with a queasy stomach for such things even in print... can I get an amen?). It may have been the rough sea, or the excitement, or the rich food, or just maybe it was the mixing of gin with rum. Whatever it was, he has never had that condition before (so says he) and he has sailed troubled waters aplenty, including the stormy North Atlantic three times on much worse seas than this, so I am told. But for some reason, the voodoo dolls kicked in, ladies, and delivered a perfect storm to his stomach that night.  After the final round—in which he had just tried, in tux (looking way too sexy and edible for me to resist for long) to accompany me to a gourmet supper with friends, and failed—I convinced him to see the ship’s doctor. He was pretty woozy as we walked down the endless passageway, and he was as white as the sheet on the gurney when we reached the infirmary. My husband woke up in a hurry, however, when he learned he was to receive a really big needle in the butt administered by Nurse Q T Pie. Knowing him as I do, I’m sure Mike was so embarrassed by the ordeal that he didn’t even remember why he was there in the first place. After that night, everything was a breeze and all was quiet in the lower left quadrant (below).

One night, as we stood with our friends, Kathy and Ernie, watching some musicians perform below us in the ship’s huge atrium, I nudged Mike. I had just spotted the “Wicked Witch of the Wheelchair” being pushed through the crowd by her sweating slave of a husband. Mike had run into this elderly couple three times previously, and all three times he mentioned that the old woman was constantly scouring her husband for something. “You’re going too slow! Hurry up!! HURRY UP!!!” . . . “Why are we going so fast? SLOW DOWN! . . . “I want to go down there! I don’t care if there isn't any ramp! WHY CAN’T I GO DOWN THERE?” All of these angry comments, said Mike, were so loud that everyone within fifty feet could hear. The woman just did not care who heard her tirades. Meanwhile, the browbeaten and clearly nervous husband never said a thing; he just pushed the wheelchair faster, or slower, depending on the command. Michael surmised that it might have been a “Baby Jane” scenario, i.e., the husband may have been responsible for the wife’s crippled condition and it was her duty, as she saw it, to make the man miserable every minute of his life. So, on this night Mike just had to follow the couple and see if the old woman was always a screaming witch, or if the other encounters had been mere coincidences.

When Michael returned, he gave me a full report. True to form, the old shrew had yelled at the husband for going too fast. Indeed, the man was moving so fast that Mike had to really walk quickly to stay up. “What’s the rush?” growled the WWW angrily. Finally, when they reached the object of their journey (the movie theater), Michael was surprised to see the old bag get out of the chair under her own power and walk into the theater. Truly bizarre. If this lady acted like that in public on a Caribbean cruise, what must she be like at home?

I’ll write more tomorrow or the next day if the spirit moves me and I'm in the mood...or not at the barn...or at the beach...or watching a vampire movie.