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Archive for June, 2008

Last night I packed. Then unpacked. Then repacked. Then unpacked. I get a little neurotic when I travel.

And, while my compulsive tendencies make it unbearable to fight the urge to count the number of q-tips in my dop kit, I really am looking forward to this trip.

We’re headed first to Michigan, where we’ll see Patrick’s parents, then to Indiana for a wedding, then to a reunion with my friends, and then back to Michigan to see my dad. It’s a lot to do in one weekend, but I think we are both filled with joy at the thought of seeing any (and all!) of these people.

Knowing I’ll be doing a lot of, “Look what’s on my important finger!” I figured I’d spend some time doing a thorough ring cleaning, which I successfully did last night. Soaking, scrubbing, the works. I was happy to see that thing shine, and I was quite proud to know that I’d spend the next four days showing it off!

This morning before work I devoted some time to playing in the park with Kya. Patrick was planning on spending a bit of time with her, but seeing as how sad I get whenever I have to leave her, I wanted to spend some last-minute quality time together.

I got dressed for work, and then the three of us headed out to play some two-ball fetch. It was a really nice to see her so excited and happy.

We had been playing for about 10 minutes when Kya, having grown impatient with my slow throwing, jumped into the air, lunged at my hands and put her slobbery mouth all over my shiny ring. I threw the ball, eager to get her sloppy mouth away from my diamonds. I looked over at Patrick, who had watched her jump at me in anticipation. He had a big smile on his face.

I didn’t clean my ring off, and I probably won’t clean it again before the trip. It’s not about the ring, really, it’s about our family. It’s about looking at the person you love and at that point not caring that you’re covered in dog slobber. It’s about endless happiness and the joy that comes from simple things, like a great game of fetch with the ones you love most.

Whitney

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So there we were, eating grilled cheese at 12:50 am. It was dead silent as we scarfed down our food with minimal conversation.

Hearing a loud thud didn’t startle Patrick the way it startled me. In fact, he hardly even noticed until I asked him.

“What the heck was that?”

“Well,” he said, “it was either a scary noise …or a burglar.”

Rewind three hours. I was in Auburn Hills – an hour away from Patrick’s house, and I was just getting off work. I was working in retail and closed the store that night. I’d packed a bag so I could go directly to his house after work. Just as I walked out of the building, the rain began to pour. I was completely drenched by the time I got to my car.

Between the sheets of water cascading down my windshield and the defrost malfunction I was having, the trip to Patrick’s was difficult despite having driven that route dozens of times.

“I’m lost.” I said, a little embarrassed, when I called him.

“You’re what?”

“Well, where are you?”

“Lost.”

This went on for a minute or so before we figured out I’d missed my exit. Upon pulling into one of those “authorized vehicle only” u-turn lanes, I realized (as I nailed a giant pothole) that my car is, well, NOT an authorized vehicle.

Patrick, who played the role of knight in shining armor, jumped on his noble steed and rode toward the beacon that was the flash of my emergency hazard lights. While I was waiting for him to find me, I rolled down my window and a giant wad of karma hit me in the face. I’ve never again attempted to forge authorized vehicle status.

Patrick changed my tire. In the rain. In record time. Starving, tired and bursting with frustration, I followed Patrick back to his house where he made me a delicious grilled-cheese masterpiece. By this time it was nearly one in the morning.

“What the heck was that?”

“Well,” he said, “it was either a scary noise …or a burglar.”

“Haha… good one.”

Patrick’s house is a beautiful colonial house that was built 80 years ago, so it makes a lot of weird noises. This time, though, it wasn’t the house.

I walked out into the hallway, and heard another thud. Holding my overnight bag over my shoulder. I stared at the man pressed up against the back door.

“Patrick. There’s a man.” (I know, how robot-like of me.)

“What? What are you talking about?” he said, sticking his head out of the kitchen. I pointed to the back door, which happened to be only about a foot away from where Patrick’s face was.

“Come here now!” he said as he stayed surprisingly calm. I was still in some strange realm of shock as he pulled me into hiding on the dining room floor, then called 911.

Patrick remained calm the whole time in the face of danger.

“Mom, dad, don’t be alarmed. The police are on their way. Someone is trying to break into the house.”

We gave the description to the police when they arrived: a tall, scraggly man in his fifties, wearing ripped jeans and a plaid flannel shirt. Scraggly gray beard and hair. Such a description accurately describes half of the men in any given high-security prison cell block.

Jim, Patrick’s dad, headed out back onto the porch and, noticing the fresh boot prints, made a comment about how our story did, in fact, check out. Apparently he didn’t realize how dangerous it was for him to open the door and retrace the steps of a could-be killer on the loose (in his bathrobe, mind you).

Patrick and I went back up to his room and began telling all of the scariest stories we could think of (why? who knows). It was maybe ten minutes later that we heard banging on the door. In one swift motion Patrick jumped off the bed, turned off the lights and grabbed his weapon of choice — a golf club — before running down the stairs.

Turned out the police were back. They had caught the guy. He was carrying an empty bag an had no explanation as to what he was planning on doing with it. He said he was looking for a friend he met earlier that day at a party store, but wound up in Patrick’s neighborhood. From then on, he assured them, he would “stick to the main drags.”

As it turns out, there was a warrant out for his arrest. We never found out the name of our scraggly intruder, but we just call him “Rodney.”

Whitney

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No A/C

It’s bad enough for Whitney that I’m on the road all the time. While I’m enjoying the luxuries of my comfy hotel room, Whitney and Kya are back in our apartment with a broken A/C. Interior temperature=91 degress. She would have posted about this but her fingers melted. So did her computer.

Damn apartment life. Number one thing on our wedding registry will be a three story mansion.

Patrick

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Eyelashes

Dear Whitney,

You know how whenever you find one of my eyelashes you put it on my hand and tell me to make a wish? Well, I always wish for the same thing.

I can’t tell you exactly what I wish for but I can tell you it always comes true. I’m the happiest guy in the world with you.

Love,

Patrick

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Dear Patrick,

The run we took two nights ago was extremely difficult for me. You already know this. If the gym hadn’t been closed, we could have run next to each other at our own paces on separate treadmills. Instead we took a long jog around our lake and ran at a speed that can only be classified as a compromise that did NOT work in my favor. And, despite my training and constant devotion to fitness as of late, my insides protested to the speed increase by stabbing me from the inside with pointy objects.

It’s hard to keep up with you because, as I’ve told you many times, my legs just don’t know how to be as long as yours. But still, despite the pain and hard work, it was comforting to have you by my side.

The evening was a little breezy, which made it a little more bearable to run outside …in Florida …in June. The pains in my chest and gut almost got the best of me, but you helped me power through.

That run was a clear demonstration of the kind of relationship we have. We work hard for the things we want, we never give up and we always help each other become better. And whenever I feel like I can’t go on, you’re always there to cheer me on. You push me to be my best, to reach greatness, to be extraordinary.

No matter what we go through, I feel lucky to have you next to me. You’re my best friend and my greatest inspiration. You make me laugh, you make me happy and you are a living example of what it means to be a good person.

I never really knew what how big my heart was until I fell in love with you. I never knew how happy and fun life could be. Thank you, Patrick, for all the things you’ve taught me. I’m forever grateful.

Thanks for being the love of my life. Thanks for being my cheerleader. Thanks for being my biggest fan. Thanks for being my friend. And thanks for being mine.

Love,

Whitney

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I’d say I’m the second love of Patrick’s life — his car is his first.

On one of our first dates, we were out for a drive in his little blue Subaru WRX. It’s a manual, which is quite a trend among youngsters who learned to drive in the Detroit-metropolitan area. We were at a stop sign, listening to loud music and having a good time when the car started shaking and then turned off.

He had stalled.

Pointing a stern finger at me and trying hard to keep a straight face, he said, “Don’t EVER tell ANYONE about this!”

And I never did.

Whitney

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