Finding everyday things in strange places has become a daily occurrence at our house. I’ve found a milk carton in the bread drawer, Peter’s green coffee mug in the fridge’s butter keeper. Salt and pepper shakers and Coleman’s mustard are often in there too — that little compartment can hold a lot. One morning there was a plastic baggie filled with potatoes beside his chair in the family room, and the electric kettle was sitting next to the burner of our gas stove. The latter, a disaster waiting to happen.
Lately Peter insists it’s my fault that he’s never known he should put liquid soap into the sink to wash things that don’t go in the dishwasher. Likewise, it’s my fault I never told him where to put the teaspoons after I finally found all of them wrapped neatly inside a place mat. And after I’d searched all over the kitchen for the box of tea I knew I’d bought a few days before, Peter was as surprised as I was when he pulled the box out of the little table beside his chair.
“Ah ha!” I said.
“How did this get in here?” he asked.
I rolled my eyes and raised my left eyebrow, but I was smiling. “Nobby did it,” I said.
This morning around 11:30, I reminded Peter he still hadn’t taken the dog for his early walk. “I know, we’re going now,” he said. He fumbled with Nobby’s harness — he can hardly manage it anymore, but gets angry if I try to help — and started out the door wearing only a light sweater over his shirt.
“You’ll need your jacket and a hat,” I said
“But it looks like summer outside,” he said. “Looks like the sun is going to come up.”
“Peter, it’s nearly noon, the leaves are all gone, and it’s gray and cloudy and cold.”
“Oh-h, well…yes-s…,” he said as he went to get his jacket.
I sat down to write this post. Minutes later, my husband, zipped into his jacket, came up behind me. He held the dog’s leash and collar in his hand, but Nobby wasn’t attached. “Do you think Nobby wants to go for a walk? Is it too cold for him?”
“No, he’s got his fur coat on,” I said. “Go, go.”
“OK, we’ll back soon,” he said.
“Thanks for the warning,” I said, using one of his well-worn sayings. He laughed.
2016 National Society of Newspaper Columnists’ contest, second place, blog category.