A couple months ago, about a month after our 27th anniversary, David said, “We should take a vacation. Should we go on a cruise?”
I’m pretty sure my mouth dropped open. David has always been averse to cruising because he doesn’t know how to swim and is afraid of the water. It was a very nice thing for him to offer.
“Sure,” I said quickly. “What’s the occasion?”
“Our 25th anniversary,” he said. “We never did anything, remember?”
Yes, I remembered. That’s another story. “I remember,” I said. “Where would you like to go?”
“I thought I’d take you to Hawaii,” he said. “You’d like that, wouldn’t you?”
Well, who wouldn’t like a trip to Hawaii? That would be wonderful. But I don’t think I’ve ever mentioned a desire to go to Hawaii. Maybe South Dakota, but not Hawaii.
“Okay,” I said, sitting down at the computer and pulling up websites. This one was not going to get away from me. “Want to help me plan something? What would you like to do in Hawaii?”
“Oh, I don’t know,” he said, standing up and walking out of the room. “You can plan it. You’re much better at these things than I am.”
I watched him go, and sighed. Hmm, I thought. Since I am the one planning the trip, I think I will go somewhere I have wanted to visit my entire life. I check the balance in our timeshare account, and yes, there is enough to cover it. I’ve told David that I’ve always wanted to go here, and I think he just forgot.
I booked a trip to Venice.
I thought he would be okay with that, and he was actually kind of excited, too. So, the plan is to fly to Venice, spend three days and two nights in a hotel on the Lido, and then we’ll go for a seven-day cruise to Italy, Greece, and Croatia. I can hardly wait!
I borrowed a book on Italian from my sister. “Would you like to practice learning Italian with me?” I asked him. I thought it might be kind of important to be able to read signs and menus and things, at least a little. I have no delusions that I will be able to hold my own in any kind of conversation, but I’ve learned a few very important key phrases:
“We’re lost, can you help us?
“Those earrings are beautiful, how much do they cost?”
“May I have another gelato, per favore?”
That should get me by. David declined to learn Italian with me. As the date gets closer, I’m getting more and more nervous. I’ve been to England, and to Mexico, but never on our own like this in a place where people don’t speak English. I’m comforted by the fact that Venice is pretty touristy, and it’s quite likely that people we would come in contact with would speak English, especially at the hotel. But I’m doing all I can with whatever time is available to me to learn a little Italian, and I really want to continue learning when the trip is over and we are home again.
Because maybe, someday, I can go back.