I do believe my husband is a modern-day Grizzly Adams. Remember the iconic character from the 80's, the grizzled man who lived in a cabin in the woods and had all sorts of adventures with his pet grizzly bear, Ben? He was a simple man - didn't need much - just a roof over his head, a sharp stick to pick his teeth with, and a cast iron skillet. And that's where my husband comes in.
As of late, Jeff enjoys making himself an egg in the morning for breakfast. But he doesn't "make" an egg. He "sets an egg to fryin'" (his words) in his long-forgotten but newly rediscovered cast iron skillet. While his egg is sizzling, he does his morning routine of feeding the dogs. By the time he returns to the kitchen, his egg is perfecly fried and he consumes it with gusto. But then.........then he leaves the cast iron skillet on the stove, still greasy and speckled with salt and pepper. Because any good mountain man knows you never wash your cast iron skillet. Why, all that leftover grease and grime just adds "flavor" to the next meal cooked in it!
I believe my husband does this because he truly wants to be a mountain man. He's a simple guy, with a love for all things outdoors. In fact, when indoors, he often forgets he's NOT outdoors and behaves as such. Wipe off the counter? We don't do that while camping. Leave a pheasant pelt hanging up to dry on the side of the house? Why not? Well, because we live in suburbia. But Jeff likes to forget that.
I wonder sometimes if I can truly provide the happiness and companionship he needs as a suburban housewife. I mean, Grizzly Adams didn't even have a girlfriend, and seemed perfectly content to cuddle up to his giant bear. We may live in the suburbs, but Jeff's heart is in the wild. He asks me to subscribe him to "The Reel News" and "Outdoor Life". There's a turkey call on my dresser. The bookshelf is filled with Patrick McManus novels praising all things outdoors.
So, what's a woman to do? I happily accompany him fishing, camping, crabbing and clamming (silently thanking God that Jeff decided to splurge on a pop-up camper a few years back, thus saving me from tent camping in the pouring rain). I've yet to accompany him hunting because - well - slogging through a grassy marsh while holding a firearm for the sole purpose of filling a small pheasant full of lead shot just doesn't rank up there with, say, getting a pedicure.
Still. I really think Jeff could be happy growing a beard, not showering for days, eating off the land and holing up in a dank cabin with a bear. But I'm glad that, for now, he's keeping up his other persona of buttoned-up businessman. Well, perhaps not so buttoned up. He's more of a top button opened, t-shirt showing, slightly wrinkly businessman. But I love him just the same, especially when I hear him knocking around the kitchen, settin' his egg to fryin' before he heads off to the hang with the suits - perhaps with a pheasant feather stuck to his shoe.......