We always get lost on car trips. I’ve come to expect it. Ron does the guy thing— refuses to ask directions. We can go circles out of our way; miles without sleep is what I sometimes think, wondering if Robert Frost had similar problems on car trips.
So I go to AAA and buy a bunch of maps. That night I say to Ron, “Look what I got!”
He hardly looks. It’s his way of keeping the power. “Well at least we won’t get lost anymore,” I say.
“Who’s going to read them?” He’s dropping three lumps of sugar into his coffee one at a time. I listen to the plop plop plop.
“Whoever isn’t driving!”
Now isn’t that obvious? It’s obvious to me. I think it would be obvious to the world at large.
“Ceilia, I don’t believe your eyes are good enough to read the small print on a map.”
“My eyes are fine with my reading glasses.”
“Did you upgrade your prescription? Because you can’t read the dosage on your stomach pills bottle.”
Now I want to say: If I lived by myself I wouldn’t need stomach pills. I never needed stomach pills until you came into my life. I think a map is a beautiful thing to behold. It shows me all the places I can escape to.
I don’t say any of that. I look at him watching his three lumps of sugar dissolve, and know I’m too late to start a new route.