I'd known the Drews for a couple of years. They were in their late twenties and both tended to work long hours, so although they only lived across the street I rarely saw them. They seemed a happy enough couple. John was a big man, not as tall as me but had a lot better physique. His wife, Ann was a petite woman, pretty enough but not a head turner. I had noticed Ann around the house more these last few weeks but I assumed she was on holiday. It was a hot sticky morning when I noticed that Ann was pregnant. I'd been strolling back from the shops when I noticed her walking in front of me.
I shouted 'Hi' and she turned saw me and said 'Hello'.
It was when I caught up with her that I became aware of her state.
'Oh congratulations' I muttered taken by surprise 'I didn't realise. When's it due?'
'Thanks,' she replied without enthusiasm, 'another six weeks yet. Unfortunately!'
'Tired out' I commiserated 'I know how you feel' She gave me that woman's look that said I couldn't possibly know how she felt. 'Ok. My ex went through it four times. It's great at first, all the excitement but when you've been carrying it round a few months and your back's killing it's not quite the same'
'You've a better idea than John' she moaned 'He thinks its easy but it isn't him that carries the lump or has to do without a drink'
'You've give up the vino then' I knew that both of them, whilst not heavy drinkers liked a glass of good wine. 'You can still have the odd glass though, I know my ex did'
'Not according to John I can't, although I could sure do with a drink'
By now we were virtually at my house so I said 'Well, I've got a bottle or two of '95 Nuit St Georges. Its not at its best yet but its certainly palatable'
Ann looked up at me with a smile 'I'm certainly tempted but I hadn't better, John will only moan'
'Well the offer stands if you feel you need it' I offered.
'I just might take you up on that' she said as we parted.
I thought little more about our passing conversation until the doorbell rang a few hours later. As I opened the door Ann was standing there, looking distinctly unhappy. 'Is that offer still on?' she asked puzzling me.
Quickly remembering the drink I answered 'Of course. It'll be my pleasure. Come on in.'
Ann followed me to the kitchen and as I opened the wine she told me why she looked so down.
'John has just rung to say he is going to be late. Again.'
I said little as Ann talked about her marriage and how since the pregnancy was confirmed they'd drifted apart.
'It's as if I'm a different person.' She complained. 'He hasn't touched me for three months, not even a hug. How did cope? Did you have an affair? I think he's got another woman somewhere.'
'How did I cope with what?' I asked.
'You know,' Ann said blushing, 'no nooky'
'Oh that. We had no problems. We made love virtually up until the kids were born. And no I didn't have an affair; I didn't want or need one. Why do you think John is?'
'John's always been a bit over sexed, he never could go long without it so I guess he's found somewhere else to get it.'
'Why don't you want him around you?' I asked. I knew many women pushed their men away during pregnancy.
'It's not me. I like it as much as he does' Ann once again went red as she realised her admittance 'he says I'm not attractive anymore and I just don't turn him on'
Again I knew many men with the same problem. I was lucky as I told Ann 'I feel sorry for him. I always felt my wife was at her most feminine when she was pregnant'
Ann clutched her stomach and said 'Feminine this?'
'Well I don't know of any man that can do it' I laughed and then added 'although I've seen a few try to copy the look with the aid of beer'
This made Ann laugh. 'That's true. But I don't feel feminine. Do I look it to you?' she asked.
.... There is more of this story ...