We were hiking to the top of a long steep forest trail when my husband stopped by a stream, got down on one knee and asked me to marry him.

“What? Now? Like this, sweaty and out of breath in the middle of the woods? Ask me again on the way down, I have to get used to the idea.”

He did.  I said yes, and then he pulled the biggest diamond ring I’d ever seen from his jacket. My heart sank. ” Oh honey, I’m just not that kind of girl. What am I going to do with something like that?” We settled on matching silver bands with a Celtic weave.

Our first Valentines Day he gave me a box that had real gold ear-rings shimmering against purple velvet. Oh my, I thought, he is going to have ‘Ingrate’ inscribed on my tombstone. “Take these back to the store, dear, and buy yourself a pint for your trouble. I’m just not that kind of girl. I don’t want gold and diamonds. If you want to give me gifts of enduring affection, buy software and learn to use it. What turns me on is having a business partner, someone who can bring my artistic visions into reality, someone who believes in me and can remain steadfast when I lose faith in myself.”

The engineer in him rose to the occasion, learned to do sound editing, film clips and placement of art work; the husband in him became the business partner I always wanted. But paradise was short lived when his cousin died and left a pallet company to be managed, and when the high school needed a tennis coach who would labor afternoons and evenings as an act of love.

I found other people to help me, so my work continued but the whole affair left me grumpy and disappointed. Now tennis season is winding down. There is talk of giving the pallet company to his kids and I can see a light at the end of the tunnel. We can imagine more time for us, more travel, adventure and creative projects.

Last week-end his schedule lifted and he came back to me. We spent hours editing, designing and creating, then topped it off with a hike in The Gorge. I’m telling you, having my husband as a creative partner brings me closer than diamonds and hot sex ever could. Well, maybe not the hot sex part.

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