Date Night #sol20

He sat at the end of the picnic style table on the outside deck of the restaurant overlooking the calming ocean waves. Slumped over and carefully cutting his yellow fin tuna with the plastic knife. She sat at the opposite end of the table, iphone in hand capturing pictures of the setting sun with its yellows, pinks, and shades of blue stretching across the sky. Not a word was spoken between them.

We noticed them. The peculiarity of their relationship. Is this what happens after 50+ years of marriage? You inhabit the same space but need few words spoken to communicate. He, completely engrossed in his meal, and she happy to be out enjoying a sunset.

Her attention shifts to a group of teenagers on the beach setting up poses for their next Instagram post. Girls together, boys together, the whole group with a bystander clicking the picture. All the while, she is capturing the moment on her phone. Getting enjoyment from watching the playfulness and spunk of youth. Is she remembering a time with friends? Is she merely stopping to notice a moment, a slice of life around her? He continues to eat, savoring each bite, oblivious to her photo session in progress.

He is gone. Probably back at the car, sitting in silence, digging between the spaces in his teeth with a toothpick or popping a few Tums to prevent his post meal heartburn. She is still snapping pictures. A smile on her face. A Friday night out to dinner. Date night. Two different motives but both leave feeling happy.

My husband quips, “Is this us in 30 or 40 years?”

8 thoughts on “Date Night #sol20

  1. How great to draw so much out of this scene! I like to wonder when people watching, too… I love the way you saw such in-the-moment- happiness in each of them as the remained engrossed in their tasks. I do notice after 27 years of marriage that we keep great company often, each doing our own thing. It’s nice.

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  2. You paint the scene so clearly with your words – I can see both the man and the woman savoring different bits of daily joy in their shared space. The photo is breathtaking – so glad you and your husband had these moments. And I’ll wager a guess that the old fellow disappeared to the restroom… they get where they must “go” more often than we do! Lovely slice.

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  3. Your description of the couple made me smile. You truly brought them to life. And you didn’t judge them, just pondered their existence, comparing it to your own. Early in our marriage I often mistook quiet moments, thinking they were harbingers of bad times, evidence of a lack of a relationship. I would fill them with chatter. Probably my husband heard half of it, hahaha. Now, after 34 years of marriage, I am content during the quiet times and don’t feel the need to chatter. Surprisingly, this often allows my husband to be the one to bring up a topic of conversation, not just me.

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  4. Wow – your description was so vivid. I was right there with you and them. Time does bring a certain comfort and need for silence. We are in our 25th year of marriage. We always pack a deck of cards – it connects us and somehow inspires conversation – easy conversation. Well done!

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  5. You painted an amazing picture of what life is often like after a long marriage/relationship. Words are not always necessary; however, I wonder if they really were/are happy. Perhaps the loss of my marriage after more than 40 years colors my thoughts!

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  6. It’s interesting to watch others especially as we begin to slice. Perhaps this couple is at a point where they spend many hours a day together and have many conversations. We still seem to Have much to talk about, but the two of us are talkers. some people are quieter, more introverted. You paint such a detailed picture.

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