Monday, July 18, 2011


(Woman & Child Driving, Mary Cassatt, 1881, Philadelphia Museum of Art)

"Here's the thing," I say to Bob, "I'm just not feelin' it with those names we've given the GPS lady."

"Both Tilly and Lilly sound prissy to me and neither one of them speaks to her true character. She is a take charge, no nonsense type of gal."

"WAIT!" I scream at him, "I think I've got it. How about Tess?"

Bob blinks as he focuses on the winding Vermont roads.

"I see your point," he says too quickly, "Tess seems appropriate. Let's go with it."

Now I'm not - at this moment in time - completely crazy.

So I totally understand that Bob is doing his best to appease me on this name thing with the GPS lady.

I also know that he doesn't give a rat's patoody what name, we - excuse me - I, choose for her.

He's simply playing along with me for the sake of his own sanity.

"Yes," I murmur to him excitedly, "Tess is it!"

Just then I glance to my right and see a "it's seen its better days" construction truck roll past us in the right lane.

The back of the truck says "Tudhope Construction Company" in big, bold, black letters.

"That's it!" I shout to Bob, "her last name is Tudhope. Tess Tudhope. WHEW! That's a load off! It took us awhile to get there but she's finally got the perfect name!"

Bob nods his head in agreement.

"Yes, dear," he says.


Hours later, Tess is getting on my very last nerve.

I'm tired.

Tired of sitting in the car.

Tired of looking at passing trees, green grass, fat cows and other natural stuff.

But Tess, as usual, is at it again.


How many times today has she said this?

I can't believe it but she's sending us onto another twisty, curvy country road!

Silly me, I keep hoping that she's trying to connect us with some sort of interstate.

But Tess has no such intentions.

Her greatest desire is to see me barf my cookies all over the inside of the Malibu.

Which is gonna happen within the next 3.7 seconds.

I turn to Bob and say, "It's now 8 p.m. We have been switchbacking ourselves all over Vermont for four ridiculous hours. IN WHICH CENTURY ARE WE ACTUALLY GOING TO ARRIVE IN BURLINGTON?"

Bob glances at Tess.

He thinks I didn't notice.

Oh...... I noticed.

"Tess says we are scheduled to arrive in Burlington in 33 minutes."

"Is that right?" I ask innocently.

"Is she using earth time to make her calculations because this route can NOT be the shortest way to Burlington."

Bob decides to enlighten me with this comment, "Tess is taking us on the shortest possible route. But it may not be the quickest way to get there."

"Do ya think?" I ask him sarcastically, "because I'm really, really old. And I'm not wasting another precious second of my life listening to that nasty little hussie's directions!"

Bob replies, "I have to admit it. I'm getting tired of the scenic route too."

Then he turns his face to me and says, "But that's what I get for letting a woman tell me what to do."

My mouth falls open as I suck in the biggest breath of my life.

"What did you just say to me?" I ask pointedly.

"You heard me," he says.

I know Bob is messing with my mind.

I know this because he has lived with me for 40 blissful years.

And he and I both know that if I thought for one nano-second that his statement was serious, he'd already be dead.

I turn and look at Bob who is grinning from ear to ear.

"I'm glad you think......


"Did you hear that? TESS INTERRUPTED ME!!! This girl has guts flowing out the ying yang! Here we are trying to have an important conversation and this willful, wicked wench decides that what she has to say is more important than what I have to say!"

Bob is laughing.

I'm not.

I'm fuming.

And Tess?

Tess is talking.


I want to rip her big fat mouth right off the windshield!

I want to crush her tiny little screen body into a gazillion pieces with my warrior woman's foot.

I want to scoop her pathetic remains into my hands and throw them like forgotten crumbs of crystal out my passenger side window.

I do none of those things.

Instead, I watch Bob tenderly carry Tess into our hotel room.

1 comment:

  1. I would enjoy your post even if I was a total stranger, but I have to admit that I love that I've known you two long enough that I can almost see the expressions on both your faces. :o) --Val