Last Friday evening, Henry brought home a peach. It was given to him by a customer, a woman for whom he’d replaced a bath fan. She came to him as he was putting his tools away, with the peach cupped in both hands. She held it out to him. “I am gifting you this peach,” she said.
“Gifting?” I said, at home in our kitchen.
“Yes,” Henry said. “Gifting.”
“She was a good one,” he added, meaning a good customer. Bad customers schedule his time and then hire someone else but don’t bother to tell him, or else they are chronically angry. Bad customers follow him around their house or shop or barn talking strident politics while he tries to unravel the hidden cause of the dead light switch or the alarming sparks that fly from the outlet or the mysteriously tripping breaker. It doesn’t matter which politics.
“She was about eighty,” he said. “Tranquil.” My husband values tranquility.
Henry and old people do seem to enjoy a special affinity. He appreciates their lack of hurry, that they are inclined toward function over form, and are usually frugal, so do not try his sympathies with spoiled, extravagant tastes. In return,… Read more »