From my Casper the Unholy Ghost Collection, 2013
My husband and I traded in my Ford and got three new Hondas–then he promptly disappeared.
Charmed To Meet You
Ignorance is bliss, isn’t it? I suppose a lot depends on who’s asking the question and who’s responding. And possibly whether that question involves my ex.
Before my husband disappeared, I honestly believed I lived a relatively charmed life. Dear Hubs and I had good six-figure jobs, plenty of interests to keep us busy, and all the trappings of upper-middle-class suburbia.
I worked hard and put in lots of hours, but was still hopelessly in love with my ex [I’ll call him Blue Eyes for this post], so little else mattered. I existed in my version of Shangri La …. my Camelot. Okay, my soon-to-be-nightmare.
Silly me! I had no clue what was lurking, waiting to attack in the coming weeks.
Ford And The Not Much Better Idea: Three New Hondas
I had two grown sons, and I thought they could use better vehicles. So a few months before D-Day, I had a bright idea. [You already know something’s coming, don’t you?]
The first part of my bright idea was that Blue Eyes and I would buy or lease a few new vehicles. We’d worked hard for years; we could afford them, so why not?
Instead of using our cars as trade-ins, I thought we would hand our cars down to our adult sons. Blue Eyes would give his Mitsubishi to the youngest son, and I would give my Ford to my oldest son. Seemed logical at the time.
I also thought we should lease a small car for the grandson we’d raised since birth. We had funds set aside for his college tuition, but he was still going to need a dependable means of transportation to get back and forth to class.
I was so proud of him. In a few months, he’d be heading off to study biomedical engineering at a university in our town — one known for football and for emphasizing the word: ‘THE’ before pronouncing the rest of the university name.
‘Ah, Step Into My Web’ Said The Spider To The Fly
My Dearest Blue Eyes, bless his heart. Heavy sigh.
I purposely say ‘bless his heart’ with a slow southern drawl because I in no way mean that to be a compliment. If you’ve ever lived in the south, you know that ‘bless his heart’ can many times mean something akin to cursing without the profanity.
“Bless his heart’ Sweet Cheeks never let on that anything was amiss. Never in the entire car-buying process did he say or do anything that would tip his hand to what he had cooked up and was about to unleash on me.
So, just weeks before his upcoming disappearing act, we sat side by side, just like any other married couple — signing on the dotted line for two (3!) new fully loaded Hondas. Two for ourselves and a lease for a small Civic for the grandson going off to college.
Little did I know that my ole buddy Blue Eyes (sitting on my blind side over, by the way) had secretly set up his own individual accounts with several other banks.
He’d also been incrementally siphoning money out of ‘our’ joint accounts — making the withdrawals appear to be bill payments — and buying and hiding gold in a metal suitcase under the bed. He was also busy liquidating other assets—an active little beaver.
I wasn’t aware that he’d applied for a passport. Neither of us had needed one — we’d never traveled outside the country except crossing the Canadian border. A passport hadn’t been required when we lived in a border state.
I sat there with him in the Honda dealership finance office, oblivious to the fact that he was only weeks away from hopping a plane and jetting off to another continent to start a new life with his old girlfriend from high school.
Husbands, Hondas, and Booby Traps, Oh My!
Yes, the love of my life sat there and said nothing. Instead, he quietly let me sit there with my chair on that trap door, knowing full well that he was about to pull the lever.
In short, the day we signed the papers, he knew he was going to sashay off and saddle me with three new major financial obligations. He had no care or forethought about how I would pay for them after he left, or how I would fare if I no longer had his portion of the monthly income. God forbid if something were to happen to my job. Adding insult to injury, he left with our hard-earned savings — our grandson’s tuition money.
But then again, he was such a swell guy.
“Have a seat… a little to the right … right there … on that red ‘X’ painted on the floor … Perfect! Well, ta ta for now …. Gotta take my money and run.”