Friday, November 16, 2007

Road Schooling

Every few nights Robert and I discuss our directions. Where will we go next and when? Overall, I've had the biggest say in these decisions partly because it requires research and that is not his job. His responsibility is to the transport and delivery of trailer and precious cargo. We never sat down and discussed this, we just naturally fell into the jobs we were suited for.

Just like our marriage. We never sat down and laid out the process of how it was going to work. Somehow, we knew where to jump in. We tended to delegate responsibilities in full to one another without a lot of negotiating. Tasks were determined along gender lines, no doubt, but for the most part that seemed reasonable. He made the living; I ran the household with little interference. I didn't want to see Robert doing laundry no more than he cared to see me carry firewood. It worked for us.

So we carry the same process on the road. However, there are some things that simply don't transfer. First, the household, my domain, is now a travel trailer. Not much house management to do. In fact, most of the concerns are mechanical and therefore fall to Robert. Second, and most impacting, is that my charge over travel planning is akin to his usual job of being at the helm of our lives. I'm steering the ship, so to speak, and although he is literally in the driver's seat I am calling the plays, especially lately as we travel through my home state of California. He's unfamiliar with most of it and is therefore even more at my mercy. I know he likes the ocean so I aim for that. But what he really likes is boating and cronies to play with, a little television, and a lot of space to relax. The cramped space of the Airstream bothers him more than I.

One thing I've learned on this journey is this: I feel more responsibility to his happiness. I think he's always worried more about mine. And now I know why--he was the one leading--the one to take the blame if we should fall. Surely, a little trip in a trailer does not equal the trials and burdens of a 24-year marriage, but little insights are quick to grasp if you're willing to be schooled.

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