I would love to say that my husband and I never fight. That we exist as two co-dependent peas in a pod and that our morning breathe smells like gummy bears and sunshine. But this would be a lie. We do fight. Not often, and usually not for more than ten minutes (I have a short attention span, and being mad is boring), but we do fight.
A few days ago, we were talking with some friends about being in Florence, Italy last year. My husband laughed and said, “Yeah, I really thought you were going to murder me.” And all the memories of considering pushing him out in front of a bus came flooding back. I either had to walk away from the story or hire a bus to finish the job. And this is why.
We had been on a train from Venice. I was hungry and tired, which was his first mistake. He knows not to let me get to the hunger point, especially not when I’m already tired. And it was hot out. And hungry, tired, and hot makes for one horrible Megan. We got off the train, and he insisted we could easily walk the mile to our hotel. So we walked. It was lovely. There was charm. There was no food, but I knew soon we would be in the hotel. Then I could eat. He kept reading the map and pointing at things, assuring me my suffering would soon be over.
Then we found a giant intersection, which was past where our hotel should have been on the map. I asked him to go ask for directions. Now you may be thinking to yourself, “But Megan is a strong independent woman. Why didn’t she go ask for help?” Because it had been my husband’s job to learn some Italian for the trip. I had been working on my French, which is still non-existent, but I tried. The only things I can say in Italian are please, thank you, how much, and I would like a cappuccino. I only knew the bare essentials.
So my husband ran around the corner and then came back, assuring me he had found the hotel. He hadn’t actually talked to anyone. He had found a quarter-mile-long wall with no breaks in it bordered by a fenced in parking lot and decided that walking through the parking lot was the best idea. So we started through the lot, back in the direction we had just come from. I didn’t know until halfway back up said “lot of marital discord” that he had never spoken to anyone. We got all the way up the lot and turned back onto the original street we had been lost on!
I almost picked up my little rolly bag like the hulk and smashed it on his head. I asked him again to ask for help. He said there was no one around. I pointed out the English speaking tour guide walking past. He wouldn’t talk to them, and at this point, it was a matter of principal. He had said he would get directions, and he was going to do it.
I pointed out every open bar and store, and he refused to go in. It wasn’t until I threatened to leave him on the street to sleep while I went to find the hotel by myself that he went to get directions. The numbers on the street where the hotel was weren’t really in order, and the sign had the wrong name on it. But a nice local man helped us find the right place. We had walked right by it almost an hour before.
After a granola bar, I was glad I had not, in fact, murdered my husband in Florence. And the next day, he bought me a beautiful necklace on the Ponte Vecchio. But every time he tries to laugh about getting lost is Florence, I still get mad. Next time we go to Florence, we are taking a freaking cab to the hotel!*
*Editor’s note: Yes, dear…