Sunday, August 3, 2008
Wrapped Around Your Finger
I had been out of the hospital for a short time and the pain was still significant in the upper abdomen. It was the first body part that I had lost since the removal of my foreskin shortly after my birth. Thinking about it, if at my age I was to have a choice of having my foreskin removed or my gallbladder I would go with the gallbladder. I hated the removal of my gallbladder, but just the thought of the other one really gets to me.
My wonderful girlfriend spent the night in the hospital with me; this was big because she has a very strong dislike of hospitals. It was comforting knowing that she had made the sacrifice on my behalf.
Chaniya’s stay had been really wonderful and we decided that we got along very well as a couple. The hospital stay was the closing deal. I loved her and she loved me. The only thing that gave us both a worry was our financial situation. I had a huge mortgage, child support, and cost of everyday living and some bad investments on my part. Not a great start but we were convinced that we would overcome. Now looking at the mystery of hospital bills that may not be covered by my insurance, it was worth the risk and we decided to take it.
The darkness of the place consumed the would be shadows of a couple seated near the fireplace. The sound of others immersed in their own conversations about life in Libby, Montana. The place is called The MK Steakhouse just out of town. It has been a fixture in our community for many years and is what you would expect from an upper crust steakhouse in a small town. Blue jeans and no ties, well once and a while, maybe a tie. This is a place that means a lot to me. Built by the guy, Ed Lewis, or better known as, The Montana Kid, who was the original trainer for the television horses, Flicka and Fury. It is also the place where I was seated enjoying a fillet minion with my ex-wife. As I shoved a big tender piece of meat into my face, a beautiful blond with the lowest cut blue jeans I have ever seen stopped and looked at the cut of beef on my plate and said, “My gosh, that looks really good.” I answered, but I am sure she did not understand what I had said, how embarrassing. The blond was Hollywood party girl, Tara Reid. She was in town filming a independent film at one of our local lakes.
But on the night that I sat with Chaniya, I forgot about the other times I spent in the MK. I was focused on the black haired Asian beauty that sat across from me. A small basket of dark bread had been served to our table. The bread had been accompanied by little blocks of butter, wrapped in gold foil. Before the dinner course could be served I made my move. In the darkness I dropped to one of my knees before this woman that I loved. The words came out clear, “Chaniya, I love you and I would very much like you to be my wife.” I took her long beautiful fingers and singled out the ring finger on her left hand. As she smiled and said yes, I carefully guided the gold ring fashioned out of the foil from a Medowgold butter chunk smoothly over the first joint and the second as if it had been made for her finger. It also could have been the butter. We laughed about it at the time as she made adjustments to its imperfect shape.
I can only speak for myself, although I am sure that Chaniya would agree, when I say that the silly little foil ring fashioned from a cover for a stick of butter, means more to us then any other material possession that we hold. It is a true symbol of a love that is real and the day by day struggles we need to overcome and even more importantly the ones behind us.
I am sure in my heart, that one day; I will leave her alone on this earth. I have an image of Chaniya many years after I am gone preparing for her own journey. She will reach into a special place and remove the yellowed little box. She will explain to her daughter the importance of the gold foil ring. Her daughter will understand and Chaniya will carry it with her on her journey. In that respect, Chaniya and I are the richest people on this earth.
Honey I love you!
Images by Chaniya Ninbanphot Cole