Friday, June 27, 2008

Rubber Boots and GQ

When we were first dating, I used to snoop through my husband's medicine cabinet. Not that he would've minded, or even that he was hiding anything. But, in my foraging, I found a couple of midly-shocking bits.

First of all, my husband is a strong, fisherman of the Alaskan variety. He has been in the fishing industry for over twenty years. His hands are rugged and thick. With ease he can work heavy equipment, effortlessly haul whale-sized fish aboard, and hand pull an anchor from 300 feet of water. On any given day, you can almost bet he's wearing a pair of rubber boots, polar-fleece and rain gear. Might I add, he's also the kind of guy that makes even rain gear seem GQ worthy.

Which is why I was so shocked to discover his bathroom secrets. Behind the mirrored medicine cabinet, I found... Biore Pore Strips! Teeth Whitening trays! Astringent! I don't really know what I was expecting? Maybe Bunion removers or drugs? But here, these beauty aids were proof that even my burly, rugged fisherman works a little at his looks. Aw. How cute is that?

I was remindid of this when I came back up to Alaska last week. I was getting all settled in and unpacking my goodies, combining our toothbrushes and merging our shampoos. When I started placing things in our medicine cabinet, I felt like I did on my first few bathroom snoops. Between the time he was released from prison and me movin back in, he had purchased enough new products that I felt as if I were discovering him all over again.

A new brand of toothpaste sits next to a fancy blue and neon green toothbrush. He now uses very cool swivel-head, triple-blade razors (I already tested them... they're great!), a "made from organic oats" face lotion made especially for dry skin, and even Chap Stick. Chap Stick? Who is this man?

I'm having a great time finding out.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Scratched Retina

When I come back from trips, my cat gives me the cold shoulder for a couple of days. This is the cat that for some reason, would pounce on me in the middle of the night and then gently bite my chin until I'd respond with a backhand. It was the second strangest thing I've had a cat do to me. The first kitty-puss in my life did something even more bizarre.

She sucked on my eyelashes.

What's even worse is that I LET her! At only 8, I had a new kitty who was having some sort of separation anxiety from the her mother and one day while I was lying on the floor, she came up to my face and started "rooting" near my eye until suddenly she was latched on to my lid and lashes. I figured it was no big deal since I could still watch the Brady Bunch with my other eye. I'd lay there, sucking my thumb, with a cat nursing on my lashes. It wan't really the sucking or my obstructed view of Bobby Brady that finally got to me. It was the kneading of her paws and the occasional sandpapery retina lick that finally made me stick her tail in her face as a substitute.

From that day on, we had a tail-sucking cat.

So, when I returned from being at the very awesome and very powerful Proverbs 31 She Speaks conference, I was surprised when instead of my current cat putting me on ignore, the baby did. After he did the "mommy's-home!" celebratory jig, he remembered that I left him for THREE LONG NIGHTS. It was nothing but the cold shoulder and the stink eye for the rest of the day.

I have a pretty good chance of making it up to him because tomorrow I'm flying he and his brother to Alaska. He'll be officially reunited with his daddy. Although the baby has been visiting him over the winter, my 7-year-old son, (aka, "Lambchop") has not. It will be a special day for our family. (Must say a big thanks to hubby's probation officer for taking the extra time to re-evaluate his interpretation of the conditions of probation and do everything he could to help make this happen! I don't think there are many men in the system who actually take measures like this.)

So, by tomorrow, I'm sure the "airplane! Airplane! AIRPLANE!" ride, will put an end to the baby's grudge. Can't wait.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Burnt Sienna with Carnation Pink High Notes

I noticed it the first time I visited him in prison- he didn't smell the same. In the 8 months he was locked up, I was allowed to hug my husband four times. Each of those times, I nuzzled my head to his chest and tried to drink in the moment with all of my senses... but that smell... fruity? And where was it coming from... his scalp? Deodorant? Was he now using foot spray or what? Whatever it was wasn't necessarily bad or anything-just new. An imposter smell to replace his usual one. Which, if you must know, smells exactly like Crayola Crayons and is only noticeable once in a blue moon. (Or would that be a Cornflower Blue moon??!!)

Anyhow-the books and the comforter I gave him for Christmas…. Fruity. Wallet? Infused with the new fruity smell, too. At first this was totally annoying (Ok, not annoying enough to re-wash…) but now I find it oddly comforting. After three weeks out of prison, it feels like somehow this nightmare didn’t really happen. While we’re back into the swing of business and some the basics of life, it’s so easy to compartmentalize the prison time. It would be nice to pretend it didn’t happen, but it did. So, that pseudo smell? It’s simply tangible evidence that my husband really did return safely from a trip to another planet. He survived. WE survived. We’ve got alien aroma as proof.