A week ago I had one of the most pleasant adventures of my life. A reader from overseas was in the U.S. on business. She asked to visit me but travel difficulties mandated that we meet in Columbus, Ohio.
We swapped descriptions on how to meet and the rendezvous went without a hitch. With feminine grace, she turned up in a very pretty dress and high heels and sporting a special red hairdo. She looked gorgeous, but evidently she was outdone. She was almost better looking at age 28 than I at 84 in blue blazer, beard, and my water-proof hairpiece covered with a sporty blue hat.
Amazing. She must be just a little shy of my better looks, because all day everyone took one glance at her and then stared incredulously at me. I have to remember that. If I ever need attention in public, youth on my arm outranks beauty. I felt a little sorry for her, but what could I do? Can I help it if age is the new fashion?
Things change, and social customs change radically: Orange is new, black is out, old is youthful, maturity is new. Nevertheless, I felt badly. She deserved so much more attention than she received. I wanted to give but all I could do was take (all that onlooker and passerby glory). I got the credit from others, so I compensated her. I kept my eyes glued on her so she wouldn’t feel left out. So she would feel comfortable in my country.
We began the day with lunch at P.F. Chang’s China Bistro (by far my favorite—you have to test the Chilean Sea Bass, greatest fish ever). Following lunch we visited the Amish country for gift buying, ice cream, observing horse and buggy transportation, and endless dialogue about male-female relations.
Not wanting to offend a foreigner when she asked to drive, I didn’t tell her that the speedometer registered in miles rather than kilometers per hour until she passed 90 aiming for 100 on a narrow but four-lane road in a nearly new car bought just the day before.
We got a lot of dialogue points covered, however, as she spoke faster with car speed. Overall, an accomplished driver with experience only on the wrong side of the road and right side of the car, but she didn’t look or act out of place. It was fun to ride shotgun with her.
But that’s only part of my story. I learned from a relationship expert how to enable a loved man to recover after he screws up their relationship. An ounce of preventive maintenance is worth a pound of after-the-problem relationship management.
It’s coming next and expect it tomorrow.