By eight o’clock the Hampton Inn’s dining area is full enough that I feel guilty for continuing to occupy a table. I quickly re-read my Joe and Misty tale, hit save, stand, walk to the coffee urns where I fill a new cup of coffee, top-off my own, place plastic tops on both, pick them up, place the new one back down, add one of those cardboard sleeve liners to it, bring the cups to the table where I retrieve my laptop and, holding the laptop as I would a tray, place the cups on top as I walk slowly to the elevator and ascend to the third floor using mechanical rather than muscle power. I listen at room 313, hear nothing, place the computer/coffee tray on the ground outside my room, use the key to open the door, enter, stoop to pick up the coffee and computer, lay the items next to the TV, pick up Jean’s hot cup, walk it to the nightstand next to her head and say, “Good morning, sleeping beauty. I brought you coffee,” as I place the elixir down. “I’m going to shower,” I add, kissing her cheek before placing a pillow over her face. There is no response from my beloved.
Shedding my clothes I brush my teeth far more thoroughly than I had either last night or four-and-a-half hours earlier, realize that I miss my newly acquired Waterpik, a device the good folks at Carry Dental had suggested I pick up at my last check up after some discussion about the infrequency of my flossing and grab a big fluffy from the rack above the toilet. I shake my head at the multifaceted meaning of a dental practice having the word carie in it and turn the shower on hard before stepping into the cascade of needles.
The shower is also a tub and uses a translucent curtain to keep water from splashing over the bathroom floor. I see a shadow figure pass by the curtain, hear the toilet flush and then water flowing from the sink tap as I rinse shampoo from my hair and soap from my body. Finished rinsing, I pull the curtain open to reveal my beloved standing at the sink dutifully brushing her pearly whites, clad only in her tiny “I Run Like A Girl” tee. I sigh as I stiffen and, knowing full well the displeasure my wet body pressing against my beloved’s backside will elicit, do a cursory job of drying my body before exiting the tub. Draping the towel on the rack and pressing my not quite dry but decidedly excited self against the tender flesh of my wife’s lovely tuchus she wiggles in a way I find delicious even as she pulls her toothbrush from her mouth and exclaims her displeasure. Looking into the mirror, she glares as her eyes open wide, her lips purse and she shakes her head. “You’re all wet! You know I hate it when you’re all wet,” she berates.
“That’s what you get for being irresistible,” I reply, kissing the back of her neck and cupping her right breast with my hand.
She again wriggles her bottom left to right in displeasure thereby again inadvertently rewarding me with a push backwards that presses us even closer together. I pinch the right side of her bottom, back away and, grabbing a small towel, dry myself thoroughly, my eyes on her loveliness the whole time. “Better?” I ask as she lays her toothbrush in our toiletry bag, slips out of her tee shirt, grabs the other large towel and turns the shower on.
“Yes. Better,” she replies, looking from me to the shower with raised eyebrows. “Well?” she asks.
“Well?” I respond, adding the age-old inanity, “Deep subject for a shallow mind?”
“Are you going to let me take a shower or not?”
“Of course. Should I join you?”
Jean pushes me out of the way with her left index finger, shakes her head and says, “No. You should shoo. Move. Go. Go wait for me, I’ll be in soon,” she declares, rolling her eyes skyward.
I manage to pinch her left cheek before she closes the shower curtain.