Tuesday was a horrible day for me. Work was absolutely rubbish – my not new anymore boss has been a dick to me with remarkable consistency. It seems that even my mere presence angers him, his tone and body language change and he blames me for every single issue in the bank. He’s basically an awful human being who has had it in for me since he met me and amazingly, lest you think this is some crazy paranoia on my part, even the other MDs seem to be noticing it. Anyway, my point is I had a crappier-than-usual day yesterday and I really did not want to share any part of it with my new boyfriend. My new boyfriend however had other plans.
Ike told me he wanted to make chili for dinner. I happen to love chili…the beefy, cheesy kind but I am not averse to the vegetarian kind either. But chili takes a lot of time to prepare. Ike is always calm and never in a rush. This is a fantastic quality to have in a man when it comes to sex but in other avenues, it basically means tardiness and tardiness pisses me off. He takes time to decide things, asks me several questions before agreeing on meeting points and times. Though granted once this included asking me whether I had anything heavy he could help me carry so that he could plan his route better. I guess I am not used to such chivalry (which doesn’t mean I am not grateful).
I have learnt to buffer for delays and after a couple of early transgressions, Ike has reduced his delays to under 30 minutes. Small price to pay for slow and deliberate love-making, right ladies?
And yet last night was trying. He left the apartment late to get groceries, got stuck in rush hour traffic both at the store and on the streets and didn’t start with the cooking until past 8.30 which is when I left work – stressed, tired and utterly famished. All I wanted was toast and sardines out of a can. I walk into the apartment and it smelt like roasting onions and the chili was nowhere near being done. I felt incredibly annoyed but I kept my impatient and sarcastic mouth shut. I hugged him quietly, he wrapped his right hand around me as his left one emptied the liquid from a can of beans. I lingered on a few more minutes before retiring to the bedroom.
The bed wasn’t made and there were clothes on the floor, on the windowsill. The music annoyed me too. I turned it off and quietly went back in the bedroom and started making the bed, folding the clothes, putting things away. Ike was not at fault for all of it, I am extremely disorganised myself. But as he conceded today, he had “let the apartment descend into chaos while I was at work”. I did all this quietly waiting for my annoyance to dissipate, which it did when I noticed that he’d taken my laundry in from the balcony and folded all the clothes. He didn’t need to do that and it was a really sweet and generous gesture.
I don’t know if Ike noticed my silent attempt at restoring order. I just hoped he would understand that I needed a bit of quiet. Evidently, he did has as he didn’t speak to me until I was ready.
I walked into the kitchen and wrapped my arms around him. He stirred the chili quietly till I said something first. Dinner was almost ready.
“Feeling better?” he asked, arms around me.
“Not even after coming back home and spending 5 minutes in an apartment I managed to mess up for you?”
(How did he know?)
“I wish you wouldn’t read my mind, you know”
“I am sorry, you know I try to not have you come home to a messy apartment but I messed up the timing today”
“I didn’t say a word…” I protested softly.
“I know you didn’t”
And then we kissed and lived happily ever after.
P.S. The chili was delicious too, served atop a pile of alfabetico pasta and dolloped with greek yogurt. I took it as lunch to work the next day. At least for now, I am a lucky girl.