They Can’t All Be Gems

Dearest Rachel –

I know I have permission to skip a day or two now and again, but that wasn’t how life was like when you were still here. There was rarely a day that went by that we didn’t talk to each other. I mean, there were occasions when you were out of town, when you were at a women’s retreat, or visiting your parents. But even then, we tried to keep in touch.

But it’s true that the news from back home isn’t always the most exciting thing in the world, and I keep reminding myself that, compared to heaven, nothing I say or do can really be all that interesting. Still, I find myself needing to write you, and let you know what’s going on.

Just… be aware that the news can sometimes be a little mundane.

Part of it has to do with preparations for upcoming events, be it Thanksgiving or travel. The events of this early part of the week wind up getting overshadowed by the days to come. Yesterday, for instance, was my first take at the PCR test. Only, this time around, I was to administer the test to myself while I’m sitting in the pharmacy drive-through, with several cars behind me, waiting their turns. I was quite self-conscious and uncomfortable, and that was even before I had to jam the swab halfway into my brain. It seems a little unsanitary to stick the same swab into both nostrils, but that’s what they had me do, then break off the stem and stick the half with the cotton swab into a little vial of some solution of unknown provenance for them to ship off to some lab wherever. You do what you have to, in order to do what you want to, some times.

Now, I’ve got to go through that again this afternoon, and I hope that both tests show me to be in the clear by the time I have to head off to the airport.

Once that little ordeal was over, I headed home early to find the Daniel had just gone out and gotten himself a late lunch. Well, at least I know he’ll be able to take care of himself and his needs while I’m gone. So that’s encouraging. It does mean that I’m not going to be eating with him today, however, so I can go grab some thing from someplace that he doesn’t like, such as His Majesty’s Hamburgers – although he does request (at my prompting) a frozen cola.

And wouldn’t you know, just like at the Golden Arches, their frozen dessert maker is broken. So I get my order, and rather than disappoint him, I stop at the gas station across the street for a similar frozen beverage. When I tell him the story, he’s actually somewhat apologetic – which is rather in character for him, however necessary. We enjoy our respective meals in the companionable silence that this house used to be known for, with each of us at our respective computers doing our individual thing.

Mine includes dealing with more mail. It seems that Ruby has more to say – although she seems to be ignoring my offer to meet this evening (it’s the one and only chance she’ll get for the next two weeks). Which actually works out well, as you’ll hear a moment – as she continues to try and market herself to me.

Meanwhile, while continuing to peruse the app, I in advertently send a smile to somebody I hadn’t meant to. Perhaps I shouldn’t be picky, but I know that there are just some denominations with which I sincerely doubt I would be compatible. Sure, you and I got along well with Elizabeth, but she had unique reasons to convert to her brand of Christianity. And while The Bridge is built of many bricks taken from various cathedrals, the fact that a person – assuming it’s a real person – is on this site is because they’re looking for someone who shares their brand of faith. I wouldn’t expect to be able to convert them, necessarily, when there are supposedly plenty of women who don’t require that sort of effort from a religious perspective.

Be that as it may, I clicked the like button when I didn’t mean to, and was promptly rewarded with a response. Catfish or no, those who are out on this site are at least quite friendly, asking how long you’ve been here, and what your experiences are.

For once, I felt I had nothing to lose by being completely and perfectly honest. I told her that after two or three months, I’ve encountered an awful lot of catfish. I’ve also talked to girls in real life (mostly in the church green room) about their own experiences dealing with creeps online, and how I feel sorry for them and what they have to put up with on their end of the experience.

You’d be amazed at how quickly her profile disappeared, taking this conversation with her. Which is a shame, because I’d like to have a copy of that, to know how specifically to get rid of future potential catfish.

Anyway, the problem with getting home so early – to say nothing of eating at such an odd time – is that it seems like the whole day ends way too soon. It gets dark this time of year, after all, it almost feels like I should head to bed until I look at the clock and it reads that it’s only six. Wow, to be fair, that means it’s probably midnight or one in the morning over where I’m headed, so I may have a leg up on the time changes at this rate. But I don’t need to be waking up so early on this side of the pond. I may have a thing or two to let you know about (or not – I doubt this is particularly of interest to you) but five or six in the morning is more than early enough to get up.

Besides, I’ll be in the booth tonight, and I don’t wanna be literally falling asleep at the switch.

Anyway, wish me luck, honey. I think Daniel and I will both need it.

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I am Rachel's husband. Was. I'm still trying to deal with it. I probably always will be.

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