When I left the workplace nearly two months ago for a life of leisure, I traded 9 to 5s for my own pace and priorities. No more bosses who expected more with less, no more stressful deadlines, no more stuffing the day full of grunt work until it finally burst like a balloon with one puff too many. Right? WRONG! I am discovering that one’s dear husband is a way more demanding boss than that other boss ever was.
The other night, we had plans to meet friends for dinner at a restaurant. My dear husband asked nicely if I would pick up a bottle of wine, Riesling perhaps? No problem. I had to grocery shop anyway, and the wine store is right next door. I hadn’t really set a firm time to go as I had a couple of other errands to do and a freelance story to write. But I figured I’d take care of the wine by mid-afternoon, well ahead of our 7:15 p.m. reservation.
At mid-morning, the dear husband calls: “Did you buy the wine?”
“Not yet, honey.” Long pause. I was urged to buy it soon so that it could cool sufficiently before dinner. Okey, dokey. Two hours later, I was getting ready to leave the house to shop. I get another call. Any wine yet? On my way there now. Long pause. Little sigh.
Now that I’m a LOL, I like to take my time grocery shopping, even visiting a couple of stores for particular items. After all, I don’t have to rush to fit the shopping around the sports lesson for my son and the aerobics class for me and the tennis game for my husband.
I set out for grocery store No. 1, got most of the items, lingered over the ethnic foods and the cosmetics and then drove to store No. 2, stopping at the bank. By now it was 3:30 p.m. As I loaded the last of the groceries into the trunk, I went into the liquor store and picked up a Yellow Tail Riesling, the first bottle I saw.
At 4 p.m., my cell rings. “I don’t see any wine.” My dear, dear husband has summer hours and was home already. Oops! “I have it,” I said. “It’ll have time to cool. Don’t worry.” Long pause. Big sigh.
I race home, run in with the bottle of wine without even unloading the melting groceries and push it into the refrigerator. My dear bossband comes over to inspect. “Why’d you buy Yellowtail?” Apparently, I was expected to know that we only buy the German one. Darn! “This is good enough,” I insist. Long pause. Bigger sigh.
At that moment, the workplace and that other boss, who was actually quite sweet, was looking mighty fine.
Lini Kadaba worked as a staff writer at the Philadelphia Inquirer for nearly a quarter century. In April, she had an opportunity to quit — and took it. Now, she’s a Lady of Leisure, or LOL for short, who lives in Newtown Square, PA. She spends her time as a full-time mom to a teenager and wife to a husband she affectionately refers to as a bossband. She also blogs, chronicling her transformation into a LOL at http://www.myyearasaladyofleisure.blogspot.com