The topic for this month is something about car maintenance, but since the only maintenance I do on my car is to fill it with gas when the gauge is on E, I'm going to talk about something that is much more important-- and it's something that is germane to all couples, even though it is not often spoken about.
Well, let me take that back-- there's quite a bit of talk about it when the kids are little. Magazine articles shout about how to keep romance alive and offer helpful hints such as, "trade weekend babysitting with a friend," or "make a date for some afternoon when the kids are in school, meet your partner at home, and enjoy a rousing game of tiddly winks."
Truth to tell, when the kids were growing up, my husband and I didn't have too much trouble finding opportunities for tiddly winks. Our bedroom was set off from theirs; they didn't understand what any noises we may have been making meant anyway; and they were out of the house often enough to allow for frequent tiddly wink rendezvous.
Once the girls left home, tiddly winks got even better-- and spread all through the house. Tiddly winks even went mobile-- we might start in the living room, move to the bedroom and then into the shower for some tiddly winks under water.
Then we had our 23-year-old daughter move back home, and suddenly there were no more tiddly winks. She has an active social life, so we didn't think it would be that much of a problem when she came home. We'll just reserve the tiddly winks for when she goes out with her friends, we thought. The problem is, she never goes out with her friends. She never goes anywhere. She is always home and is likely to walk in at any moment to find us playing tiddly winks.
This inhibits us just a little.
Okay, it inhibits us quite a lot.
My husband's friends at work evidently know the feeling. One of his co-workers told him there would be no more "Afternoon Delight" when our daughter moved back home. Another co-worker told him that when her daughter moved back home, she insisted on the girl spending the night at a friend's house every couple of weeks. I don't think that this is an issue that any articles about boomerang kids ever addresses.
Last night I came home from work and noticed my husband's car was in the driveway. More significantly, my daughter's wasn't. "Where is she?" I asked when I came in.
"She went to her sister's."
"How long is she going to be gone?"
"I don't know."
It was the best game of tiddly winks we've had in a long time!