Archive for the ‘marriage’ Category

Wanted: A sense of entitlement (or actually a penis might suffice)

Thursday, April 18th, 2013

Beware: This post is filled with gross generalisations and stereotypes and may offend some people.

There are many times during the day, week, month, year, that I wish I was male. I have sons too and I see how much they love their dad, the wrestling, ball kicking, barbequing, and the latest male pursuit in my house – fishing. Dad home means outside jobs get done, sport is on the telly and if the surf is on, he’s outta here catching waves. The boys both cry and I am left talking them into whatever the ‘distraction’ might be.

Now don’t get me wrong, I love surfing, even though I am absolutely useless at it, and I admire and envy the passion the men in my town have for it. My husband works really hard and is absolutely entitled to some time to himself on the weekend. I totally respect that and I encourage it. He’s much happier when there’s surf, and happier if he is out amongst it. What I struggle with is that I don’t have the same sense of entitlement that he, and most of the blokes around here have. If there is surf, they are out there, for as long and as often as they can be. On some Saturdays that might mean three surfs. It is the first time for the week they leap out of bed. They love it. The talk, the plan, the search, the swell. It is soul food. It is nourishing and essential.

So here is the problem. I need some soul food that also follows the call of nature, that relies on the wind and the tide and the swell. I need the passion to make my world stop when the surf is calling, at that moment, that beach, that two hour drive on that sunrise. Because I accept it, we all do. It’s not golf that takes all Saturday morning, or many weekends away. It’s not footy that takes all Saturday afternoon, and night, and a big recovery on the Sunday. (Although before kids it was, and I loved it!) It has more urgency and less predictability than that.

I have lots of things I adore and would stop everything to be part of. Most of them have to do with my friends, they are the best soul food there is. But I don’t run, or have a sporting commitment anymore, I don’t meet at a class or a group of a night. Instead I tutor students and attend committee meetings every few months. (Oh my god did I actually just write that sentence, when did I turn 50!) I love the beach, I love markets, I love hanging out in the city, I love live music. But none of these start building with the new swell from the west, and form the basis of all of my internet searching and text messages with mates. The don’t have the same urgency, but maybe they could. So I’m on the lookout for a sense of entitlement, a determination to get some more soul food in. My family would be fine with it, hell they would actually love it if I spent an hour or two every weekend to nourish and revive and refresh. But I need to be fine with it. I need to find the desire and the thirst and the enjoyment of knowing that I am entitled to do something else that I love, more often than every now and then.

Lucky for me, this weekend my kind of swell hits town.  A night in the city, the most gorgeous girls and lots of laughs with some drinks thrown in. The best kind of soul food a girl could ask for. Entitled – hell yeah, Nourished – absolutely.



When couples just don’t match.

Monday, January 28th, 2013

I don’t know if you know anyone that fits into this category, but I have some friends who are odd couples.

When you actually think about all of the couples you know, you start to realise that this is actually quite rare. There are friends who are quite different, or reveal parts of your friends that may have been hidden before, but couples who don’t seem to match and yet stay together for a long time is quite unusual.

I have some friends like this. They married really young and so have been married for an eternity already. He is a really funny, charismatic, looking for a laugh kind of guy. She is much more serious. Now this guy, like many, are very different socially than they are professionally. He too has a hard edge and when he means business you absolutely know about it. But when you know he has a softer, charming side, this always takes the forefront of your interactions. Whereas the wife on the other hand never seems to drop the serious facade. She is always on guard. I don’t know her well, and maybe that is just my inaccurate perception, but it got me thinking, how as a couple they just don’t seem to match.

I get what she sees in him. I just haven’t yet been privy to see what he sees in her. I admire them enormously that they are together and in love and sharing so much of their lives together, still. They obviously have great fun together and good on them for figuring out so early in their lives that they are right for each other. How lovely to find the one who fits when you are young and being able to enjoy all of the best parts of life together.

I have some friends who are polar opposites, but who seem to magnetise the other in their presence. They both seem so much more interesting when the other one is around. I know some people who have changed significantly since they have met their current squeeze. I know others who didn’t seem to be missing anything before they met, but now this person just seems to add the final ingredient. Some of my friends I have only known as half of the pair they are and I can’t imagine each without the other. I have other friends whose partners aren’t great friends of mine, or indeed who I struggle to hold any conversation with, but I get the attraction between them. And I have other friends whose partners are unappealing, but I accept that this is their choice and I know why they are together.

So this is one match I find baffling and fascinating all at the same time. Perhaps it is the longevity of their relationship that really stands out to someone my age. Perhaps what goes on behind closed doors is so very different to the public personas of these two people. For all I know perhaps they think the same thing about me.

I know I often wonder why my darling husband eventually settled for me, and I’m sure that some days he does too.


A couple of golden oldies

Friday, January 18th, 2013

My daily trip to the local beach was a little different yesterday. Actually the whole beach experience was the norm, it was the trip back to the car that was different. As everyone knows the worst part of going to the beach is going home from the beach. Trying to carry kids and all of the stuff that you need to take for even fifteen minutes that is now wet and sandy, all the way back to the car.

I was wandering back to the car, my arm slowly going numb from the bag, the bub grizzling in my arms and the wild child dragging his surfboard behind him. We were about to cross the path when this gorgeous couple walked past. We waited for them and exchanged smiles. They were hand in hand, taking their time, just wandering down the path laughing and talking to each other and greeting the small children they passed. They were enjoying the sunshine, not bothered by the crowds or the bikes whizzing past them on the path. They were just happy in the moment and in each others company.

It’s not that rare to see a deliriously happy couple walking to the lookout on the summer holidays. We live in a holiday town, lots of people are plastered with holiday happy faces. But this couple weren’t tourists. They were locals. They had to be, because if you were their age, you could holiday any time of the year and not have to battle the summer crowds.

This couple were old. Grey hair, walking at snail’s pace, comfortable shoes, cardis on on a warm summers day old. I reckon they were both in their 80’s at least. They were just so happy with each other’s company. Safe, secure and with genuine smiles to prove it. They made me smile, hopeful that one day I too will still enjoy my little coastal town in the summer and happily walk down the path with my husband, smiling at all the cute little kids carrying their surfboards back to the car. They would have had a fabulous story to tell I’m sure, filled with love and laughter and happiness, but also with life and that means sadness and regret.

But yesterday they making a new memory, and basking in some old ones I’m sure. A couple of golden oldies.

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