Monday, April 12, 2010

(Mrs) Adventure #9: The Other Half of my Heart is in...Asia?

This is a phrase I never thought would escape my lips. The other half of my heart is in Asia? I could have seen me saying, “the other half of my heart is on a film set in LA,” “the other half of my heart is in Charleston, South Carolina,” or “the other half of my heart is somewhere on the bathroom floor in The Green Door Tavern.” But The Far East?

Needless to say, the thought of not being able to see my husband’s face on Skype every morning has left me slightly sad and uneasy. So, in the middle of searching YouTube for a good score to place under the sizzle reel I’m editing at work, I found myself mindlessly wandering toward patriotic military videos, like saaaay An Officer and a Gentleman.

If you haven’t seen this film, I recommend it. An Officer and A Gentleman portrays Richard Gere in his finest, long before those nasty gerbil rumors surfaced. And if you can stomach the gratuitous Richard Gere without his shirt, Richard Gere during Aviation training, Richard Gere being all suave with Debra Winger, it’s a great flick. I managed to find the final scene, SPOILER ALERT where he marches into the factory, finds Debra Winger, scoops her up into his arms and passionately kisses her. Everyone starts clapping, whistling and howling as he carries her off into the sunset, and it gives every ‘Deb’ hope that someday a dashing Naval Aviator will whisk her away from her otherwise mundane life.

And I found myself laughing because it made me recall the time that my dashing Naval Aviator tried to scoop me up and carry me out of my mundane (?) life and over the threshold. We had just returned from our Honeymoon: one ferry ride, three flights with just over twelve hours in the air, and a very wild taxi ride home. The first plane resembled something that had been pulled from the depths of the Bermuda Triangle and reassembled twenty minutes prior. The second was simply over eight hours long, and the third was a commuter flight so far from the main terminal at LAX that I’m still not certain we didn’t take that bus from LAX to San Diego and then fly around in the sky for a little bit until we landed. I was irritated and moody, and my husband was irritated because I apparently kept reminding him that it was his fault that we had such a horrendous return because he had booked the tickets. In his defense, it was literally the only way to fly from the US Virgin Islands to San Diego, but nevertheless, I needed someone to blame for that much airtime.

As we sat in the cab on the way home, I continued my moody rant.

“Did you know that we are very close to a dangerous area of Mexico? Our apartment is practically on the border. There is a drug war going on, did you know that? A drug war on the border! You’ve married me and brought me to this foreign land, (keep in mind I lived in Southern California for three years), and now I’m going to become a victim of human trafficking. HUMAN TRAFFICKING. I can see the headlines now: Newlywed wife’s head found buried under the sand. And if I am one of the lucky ones not to get murdered, I’ll probably be transported through the country to ‘entertain’ Mexican dignitaries, if you catch my drift. Have you seen even Taken?!”

“Kate, you don’t do drugs and I think you have a vivid imagination. And we’re in San Diego, not Mexico and Taken, which I HAVE seen, occurred in Paris.”

“I don’t care, just look at me! I’m the perfect kidnapping victim! I know these things because I am a documentary producer. I’ve interviewed these people. They’re nuts! They’re out for blood!”

“Kate, I doubt anyone is going to come after you, you don’t even have a car here and you’re working from home. Do you plan on making daily visits to Tijuana?”

“Well, you never know. Just trying to keep me in the house, are you? I see where you’re going, buster. I see it! You can’t hold me down!”

Once we had arrived ‘home,’ I was having none of it. I wanted a glass of red wine, a burger, and a comfy bed to sleep away the next couple of days. My Marine husband probably wanted to go for a five-mile run, eat a sensible dinner, and discuss the philosophical arguments of Plato.

So when we walked up to the front door and he suggested that I put down the six carry on bags I was holding, I looked at him and said, “Give me a break, just because you’re a Marine doesn’t mean I can’t pull my own weight, damnit. What do you think I am now that we’re married, the little wife at home?”

He paused for a moment, looked me straight in the eye and told me very calmly to put down my bags… please.

“No.” I responded. “Now open the door.”

“Please put down the bags, Kate.”

“WHY?! Just open the door so we can go inside. I’m tired and I don’t want to play around. We’re four feet from where I can finally drop these things and just relax. Finally.”



And so we went about arguing for the next forty or so seconds until he went to remove the bags from my shoulder and not allowing him to do something for me, I shrugged them off.

“There, are you happy? I put down our stupid bags in front of this stupid door so you can show me how strong you are by carrying them in you big, tough Marine. Ugh.”

And then he swooped me up, opened the door, and kissed me.

About ten seconds later once I had recovered from the shock, I laughed.

I laughed loudly, realizing what he was attempting to do in the first place. He was trying to pull the romantic carry your wife over the threshold move and I had totally spoiled the moment.

“Oh,” I giggled. “Now put me down, you’ll break your back.” I added, “And can you grab those bags while you’re at it? I’m just exhausted.”

Debra Winger has nothin’ on me.

Of course in these moments I can’t help but smile wistfully. What I wouldn’t give to have my husband around to argue about carrying bags, to discuss Aristotle, or even to give me the side eye as he prepped for a run as I lay on the couch in pajamas watching ‘The First 48”. “It’s research,” I would offer and shoo him out the door into the California heat.

But now, I must sadly sigh that the other half of my heart is heading to a yet another foreign land. And as I finish watching the final clip from An Officer and A Gentleman, I can proudly say that Richard Gere has nothin’ on my husband. Why? Because he puts up with me and I have a sinking suspicion that if Ms. Winger suggested that she finish her shift before he carried her out, he wouldn’t have been so patient.

And also, he really hates gerbils.


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