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Blue Suede Shoes

I have a pair of blue-fake-suede shoes.  They’re 9-years-old.  They’re still in my closet.  No, I’m not a hoarder; there’s a reason I still have these shoes.  These shoes represent part of what I love the most about my husband.  He makes me have fun.  He makes me put aside the ultra-responsible Angie that sometimes appears.  He makes me stop—stop cleaning, stop rushing, stop talking, stop working, stop fretting—stop missing out on some of the best parts of life.
On a Friday afternoon in the fall of 2002, I drove for two hours and fifteen minutes from my college to his, Virginia Tech.  I’d remembered to pack my Shakespeare book.  I’d forgotten to pack comfortable shoes.  This shows my priorities. 
I was a senior English major taking the required senior-level Shakespeare course.   We had to read a Shakespeare play a week.  When you were a high school freshman, you probably spent an entire nine weeks on Romeo and Juliet.   You probably spent four weeks on a Mid-summer Night’s Dream or Hamlet as a sophomore, and maybe four weeks on Othello as a senior.  I was reading one of those each week, while hearing lectures and essays on the play I’d read the previous week.  It was great mental exercise, and it was hard.  Of course, I was also in a few other senior-level English courses at the time, including my all-time favorite—Romantic Poetry and Prose (although Victorian British novels is a close second). 
I knew that a road trip to Tech for the weekend would have to include some Shakespeare.  I’d forgotten that it was going to involve my first hike to the Cascades, an infamous weekend outing amongst the college crowd.  So, I went to Payless (college budget) and bought these shoes. 
I vividly remember sitting on my then-boyfriend’s futon reading Shakespeare while he napped, after giving up on my napping, too.  There was just no time for that!  I also vividly remember when he kinda made me put down Shakespeare, put on the newly-purchased shoes, and go for a relaxing, scenic drive, and then a romantic, scenic hike to the Cascades.
I am grateful.  I am grateful that he is still the man who says, “Go through the Starbucks drive-thru and get the tall white chocolate mocha already!”  It’s a frivolous, unnecessary purchase.  It makes life (and waistbands) thicker.  My husband wants me to enjoy life…and its indulgences… 
…except right now.  Right now we’re doing that personal finance program I wrote about in my last blog.  That means there’s no money for Starbucks runs or other little indulgences.  I know my husband still wants to give me everything I need and lots that I want.  But he cannot right now.  I’m sure he misses it.  I do, too. 

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