14 February 2013

Nothing Says Love Like Petty Theft

Ah, Valentine’s Day. What other day has so much power to depress a woman, fill her up with hopes of romance, or cause her to recoil at the copious amounts of pink, red, fluff, and I Heart You messages?

Let me just tell you I’m pretty sure I fall into that last category. By nature, I am far from sappy…unless it involves my baby. Because get serious. Have you seen her? Or heard her? I can’t help myself.

All the Valentine sticky gooey is completely lost on me.

However.

The first Valentine’s Day after meeting The One, I suddenly sure cared a whole lot.

Would he remember? Would he do anything special? I mean, he was really busy avoiding schoolwork and riding all the horses and working outside and stuff. And roping.

When The Day rolled around, he called me up and asked if I wanted to go roping with him. This was not unusual. We’d leave College Station, head to his hometown to saddle and pick up his horse, and then make our way to the ropin’ arena where one or more guys would be, ready to release the steers for a night of, well, roping.

The first few times I went along, I sat on the fence and just watched in rapt horror/amazement. It’s not like I hadn’t seen roping before, but it’s different when it’s your one true love, and BOY HOWDY, do they pick up some speed while in pursuit. And the night always ended with some fool trying to ride a steer.

Good, clean, six-year-old fun.

Then, after a few trips, I became the official “chute-worker.” I sat on top of this rusty contraption that used to be painted blue, and I pulled the squeaky lever to let the steer out when they were ready for the next one. At first, I was flattered and felt all kinds of “cool cowgirl,” but the wonderment quickly wore off as my rear end fell asleep from perching on top of the old wooden seat. Those guys were ruthless bosses, too, by the way. Heaven forbid you need to climb down and find a bathroom in the middle of the pasture or stretch your legs that fell asleep two hours ago.

Once this newness wore off and I learned how to politely decline with a dainty “No way, man,” I fell comfortably into my routine of sitting in the truck or in a camp chair while reading or coloring.

Because if they’re gonna ride steers like they’re six, then I’m gonna color like I’m six.

Notice there’s no mention of playing on my phone – that’s because PHONES DIDN’T DO THAT BACK THEN.

Anyway. I thought this Valentine’s Day would be like those other ropin’ days, but when we got to his house, it wasn’t saddles and tack we were loadin’ up; it was a scratchy woven blanket, some hand-picked white flowers, and McDonald’s. To Piedmont we went, for a picnic…with Boudreaux as our chaperone. He alternately shared french fries with B and me.

It was his favorite Valentine’s Day ever.

Mine, too.

Now, lest you think we stuck to something so tame and normal, I feel the need to point out that we ended the night with a trip down a famous street in his hometown: Stacey Street. I’m sure you’ve heard of it.

It’s the only one that’s spelled right.

Have I told this story before?

I feel like I’ve told this story before.

Although he hasn’t been arrested yet, so I can only assume I haven’t.

Next thing I know, we’re parked by the curb, and he’s monkeying that sign down.

It’s followed me everywhere…from the apartment in the “city” to the house in town and back out to Piedmont.

Where it still hangs.

See it?

I bet the new renters are really gonna appreciate it when they look up from their couch one day and notice a street sign in their front yard.

Luckily, my husband monkeyed it way up in that tree the same way he originally got it down, so unless they want to start scaling, they’ll never reach it.

I just don’t want them to forget me, and this sign will be a handy reminder.

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