The phone rang early this morning, and Papa Bear received the news that he was taking an unexpected day off work. This is not good news, but I did smile when he told me to “sleep in.” I woke when the phone rang, and Papa Bear brought it to me, thinking it was important. It wasn’t. It was an elderly woman who needed her sewing machine repaired (the closest sewing machine repair is an hour away, they are booked three months in advance, and they charge fifty dollars an hour), and somehow she heard that I might be her girl (I had to learn to fix mine because I couldn’t wait three months).
Papa Bear ran to get the machine, and after a little tinkering and re-threading, I had it working like a new machine. Actually, I sewed with it for a minute or two just to listen to it purr. I don’t remember the last time mine purred. I was so jealous. Papa Bear returned it and she offered him ten dollars. Then, she offered to raise it to twenty if I would do “a little” sewing for her. He put me on the phone. I do not know how to say ‘no’.
When he walked in the door with her material, I almost burst into tears. I looked at the mess in my kitchen, and then I looked at the rest of the house.
“Oh, no,” I said, as I looked at my husband with desperation.
Then, the most miraculous thing happened. My husband offered to take the material back, to do what I couldn’t do, to say ‘no’.
To protect me.
I love him even more right now than I did when he told me I could sleep in this morning!
When it took him fifteen or twenty minutes to return home, I started to get worried. As it turns out, he’d said ‘no’ for me, but had then been talked into moving a piano…for free. He trudged into the house, plunked down a ten dollar check, and animatedly demonstrated his harrowing experience.
“Well, at least we did something for God,” I said.
“What?” he looked up.
“She is a widow.”
Still frustrated, he quickly replied, “He probably died to get away!”
And after laughing heartily, we both hung our heads in shame.