It’s the Little Things

This is actually a sunrise picture. Ha! Tricked you, didn’t I?

Yeah, the sun here, it goes up, it goes down. Sometimes with clouds, sometimes without. Always doing something.

I have this friend whose marriage has been going bad for the last several years. It was one of those long-time coming deals. He’d been a drinker until she told him his choices were rehab or divorce. He’d had a couple of affairs in the past, but they’d worked it out and moved on. They’d reached a point where he wasn’t drinking and they were trying to make things work, but the little things still pointed to fundamental cracks in caring for each other.

It’s funny which things really get to people.

She’d already put up with far more than I would have, more than a lot of people would have, when the whole truck thing happened.

He drove her to the next city over – about an hour – to buy the truck when her old one died. She’s the kind of gal who plans ahead, who saves. She knew her vehicle was on its last legs so she’d saved her money and researched dealerships. They went and she bought exactly what she wanted. A rare treat.

Except it ended up costing a bit extra because the husband asked the dealership to add a decal to the rear window of the truck of an eagle and an American flag. Several hundred dollars worth of decal.

Then he wanted to drive the new truck home and have her drive the old one.

She was so mad.

I mean, this is a gal who rarely complains. She likes everyone to get along. I don’t know if she’s ever been in a shouting-mad fight. But she fumed over this. The audacity of him thinking he’d drive her truck home. Oh, and how she hated that decal she had to pay for. It had the added bonus of blocking her sightlines out the rear window.

When things finally got bad enough to blow the top – when she discovered he was involved in yet another affair – they split. He moved out. She kept her truck, of course. We all said, Now you can have that decal removed.

But it turned out to be expensive to take off, too, and she decided it wasn’t worth it. She hoped a rock on the highway might break the window and she could just replace the whole thing with insurance help. When we visited, we discussed sneaking out at night and smashing it with a baseball bat, making it look like vandalism.

Unfortunately, none of us have ever shattered a car window with a baseball bat. Sure, it looks easy in the movies, but… we chickened out.

He’s been gone a couple of years now and her life is better.

The other night, for her birthday, she went out in the evening to meet friends. She emailed me the next morning saying she’d be out for a while, taking her truck in to get fixed. Turns out she backed into her friend’s steel flatbed truck. Didn’t scratch it, but put $2700 worth of hurt to her pickup.

It was raining, she said, and had she ever mentioned that the dammed decal has bubbles in it that catch water. She couldn’t see a thing through the water-filled eagle and flag.

The good news is, she’s having the decal removed. The daughter is overjoyed, too. There are different ways to measure cost.

It’s about time.