I don’t know what it’s like for Joe when I’m not here. I travel all the time, and he must be used to what the house is like without me. Usually, when Joe’s home, I’m up way earlier than he is – on account of the music business being a thing that starts and ends late. (Musicians have realized my life goal of a world that starts at 11 and ends at 23:00. If Joe’s up at 7, it’s usually from the other side.) I get up and come downstairs, and I can have my coffee right that minute, because Joe is the miracle man who comes home in the wee hours and sets the coffeemaker to do it by itself before I wake up, a gesture of love that I’m not fool enough to overlook.
I don’t miss Joe in the daytime. As a matter of fact, the last few days have been stunningly productive – probably related to the way that Joe fritters away most of my mornings when he’s here. He reads me things from the news, asks me where we keep things, asks me if I know where he put his insert-object-I’m-not-responsible-for here. I don’t mind that much – it’s really the only time of day that we connect. Usually I give up and knit and find his stuff until he leaves. Then he’s off – gone to do his thing all day, and that’s when my day starts. I work from 11 or 12 until about 8, but I don’t see him again then until very late. I have my dinner alone most days – I cook for both of us, but Joe eats his when he comes home.
When Joe’s gone if I clean something up it stays clean, but I don’t really clean anything, because it’s just me. When Joe’s gone, I have a chance to see friends I don’t usually see, and we go out for dinner (which is a great plan, because why anyone would cook for one, I just don’t know.
Without Joe, I miss landmarks. I miss the moments that our days intersect, and the reasons to do things like dinner and cleaning, and here I am. Three days without him, and I wonder what his days are like without me, because without him my days are lovely, but strange, and I can’t wait until he comes home to bother me again, and I wonder if that’s what it’s like when I’m away from him.