Real estate can be one of the best careers around. You get to see the interiors of all the fancy houses in town, you meet fascinating people, you set your own work schedule, and you help families fulfill their dreams of home ownership. On the flipside, at certain times of the year, it can-and will-suck up every moment of time you'll give it.
Last night, after a weekend of open houses and showings, I arrived home just after 8:30. My husband, bless his heart, greeted me with a glass of wine and a foot massage. Just what I needed.
"How was your day?" he asked, rubbing the burning sole of my foot.
I leaned back in the overstuffed chair, sighing in frustration. "The Bates' looked at five more houses and still can't make up their minds. The Warner's rejected the counter-offer I presented, and the Ziegfried's decided to stay where they are. For now at least." Lifting the goblet to my lips, I swallowed more of the soothing liquid.
He gave me one of those knowing looks. It had been a shitty day, and it appeared he was dedicated to turning that around. That was always the way we worked. When one of us had a shitty day, the other would spoil us rotten with massages, wine, a tasty meal, and a re-energizing night of sex. Of course we always had sex no matter what kind of day we'd had, but the bad nights were particularly intense. Somehow, we each felt compelled to make the experience that much more rewarding on the off days.
"Oh, and did I tell you I got skunked at my open house?' He quirked an eyebrow. "Not a single soul showed up," I groaned, taking another sip of wine.
"You eat yet?" he asked, switching to the other foot. I shook my head as my stomach growled in confirmation.
My beloved teddy bear of a husband returned with a heaping plate of fried chicken, mashed potatoes, corn, and a crescent roll. He fell into his favorite recliner, and focused all of his attention on me.
As I nibbled on the chicken, I asked him to give me the rundown on his workday. It wasn't bad, but it was a long way from being great. I never envisioned myself married to an investment broker. I just assumed they were all stuffy and boring. Not my guy! We had more fun bantering back and forth over instant messaging and making faces over the web cam than any two adults ought to. Of course with our ever-conflicting work schedules, that was the best we could do to communicate sometimes. The rare instances we actually crossed paths at the same time were reserved for making wild, passionate love. It was just who we had become in our full lives together.
We cleared the dishes and headed upstairs to bed as we had done thousands of times before. He slipped out of his clothes and took his place on top of the bed wearing only his briefs, while I brushed my teeth and changed into an emerald satin nightshirt. I smiled contently as I nestled into the crook of his arm. His arms felt so warm and strong around me, and absently, his fingers teased an already puckering nipple.
As he was about to move in for a kiss, the phone rang. One of his clients. Clearly, someone was a bit panicky about his portfolio, in light of something he heard on the evening news given the time of the call. He continued to tweak my nipples through the satin as he discussed stocks, bonds, and other securities.
.... There is more of this story ...