Amazing "Sighting on the Beach in Bali"...Harmony required for this life!...

On November 13, 2012 while we lived in Scottsdale, Arizona preparing "paperwork" for our travels, we saw this stone sign in Old Town in Scottsdale while on a walk.  It read: "I have found that there ain't no surer way to find out whether you like people or hate them, than to travel with them" by Mark Twain.  Fortunately, we continue to like one another after 44 months on the move.
“Sightings on the Beach in Bali”

What a sight this was late yesterday afternoon!  What a resourceful biker!
One would think we could easily run out of conversation after being together non-stop for the past 44 months.  We don’t.  Somehow day after day, we engage in endless conversations, entertaining quips and surprisingly new stories about our lives before we knew one another which in a week will be 25 years ago. 

New construction in the neighborhood.
We laugh when we say that we’ll be able to retell old stories if and when our memories fail us as we age.  As yet, this hasn’t happened.  Although, at times, I’ll recall telling Tom a story long ago that he’s since forgotten. 

Its not that his memory is bad.  Its excellent.  Instead, its as a result of him not paying attention when I originally told him the story.  He calls it selective hearing, some kind of “guy”" thing. With his bad hearing after 42 years on the railroad, I may have told him the story speaking too softly and he ignored the entire thing.  I've since learned to speak loudly enough.

Temple behind wall. Tom's head to the right in photo.
At this point, I don’t mind him not recalling some of my stories of my life BT (before Tom).  Its makes for great new conversation.  And, not to reveal a secret, but when he retells a story he told me 20 years ago, not recalling he’d already told me, I listen with the same enthusiasm as back then.  I’m certain he does the same for me.

Yesterday afternoon as we “played” in the pool and Jacuzzi (no hot water, just bubbling air temperature water) we found ourselves laughing and telling stories we may or may not have told one another in the past.  We never seem to run out of good fodder.

Makeshift wall supports.
We even go as far as sharing stories of past loves and dalliances, neither of us the jealous types.  Some couples never go there.  We do so with aplomb.

When a couple spends as much time together as we do, it seems it can go only one of two ways; one, it can be fun, playful, loving and substantive or two,…miserably.  We opt for the first.

Elaborate entrance to community temple.
Today’s main photo of the stone inscription we encountered in Scottsdale almost four years ago, as we prepared to travel the world, didn’t scare us at the time.  We had a feeling we’d have a great experience together.  We've never been disappointed.

As for Tom’s occasional “overly grumpy” persona, it really doesn’t have an effect on me.  I’ve learned to ignore him during his short bursts of frustration which I’ve discovered seldom have anything to do with me. 

Noisy roosters kept in basket cages.
Usually, he’s feeling the frustration due to a situation over which he has little control, especially on travel days.  Not to excuse grumpiness but hey, we all have our weird moments and mine, although not centered around grumpiness can be equally annoying.

With each other, we’re tolerant and compassionate, making a concerted effort to avoid unnecessary arguing and conflict.  Those who say arguing is necessary for a good relationship perhaps have never experienced the joy of near-constant harmony with only a rare “ripple on the pond.”

Most rooftops have this similar design.
Harmony opens opportunities for good decisions, clear thinking and practical solutions.  Disharmony is a breeding ground for impulsive decision making often with devastating consequences. 

This traveling-the-world-business requires an enormous amount of self control, planning, adaptation, tolerance and quick thinking.  In a state of disharmony, all of these can waft away while the parties are wrapped up in angst, anger and frustration.

Decorative gates.
To sum it up, we had yet another good day poolside while living in the moment, reveling in the past and looking forward to the future.

May all of you, poolside or not, look forward to the future while embracing your today!

Photo from one year ago today, June 17, 2015:
While on the ship, several Australian mentioned the light color of the ship's egg yolks.  Back on land, Aussie eggs come from free range chickens and when not fed grains the yolks are dark and dense.  For more food info from Trinity Beach, Australia, please click here.


Elizabeth Banks said...

What a skill you have both cultivated Jess! I have been married now for 18 years and feel I am still in the foot hills of learning re my darling husband. In the past few years things have changed, as both our jobs and thus roles altered, and we are adjusting to a new day's routine both being at home all the time. A combination of understanding our own and one another's personalities, likes/ dislikes and anticipating reactions to situations keep our relationship alive. I feel very lucky to be in this marriage and still excited with the love and friendship I receive each day. This is despite my 'over bubbliness' along with some days of awful grumpyness. Oh the joys of an ever changing life.

Jessica said...

Liz, thanks for saying so. Its been a work in progress as all relationships can be. Its always an adjustment when a couple retires and finds themselves together all the time. It sounds like you and Dave have developed a wonderful understanding of what it takes to accomplish this often daunting task. No doubt, he feels lucky to be in the marriage with YOU. Keeping a partnership alive is the hardest part. We've found laughter and playfulness are integral in this area. Sounds like you two have accomplished this as well.

Much love to you both,
Jess & Tom

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