After a year of long-distance person-to-person phone calls, PB and I decided to quit monkeying around and get serious. We had known each other for four years, but never lived close enough to actually go out on a date. So he left Kentucky and I left Michigan and we both landed in Madison, Wisconsin the summer of ’78. Our relationship survived the long distances. Things got serious.
Looking for any excuse to be together, we offered to take my nephews trick-or-treating that October. The two boys were excited to have their cool aunt and her boyfriend take them around the neighborhood. PB thought it would be more fun if we dressed up as well. I got on his shoulders and my sister-in-law threw a big sheet over my head — we were a giant ghost. The boys were pretty impressed with their cool aunt’s boyfriend and his fun ideas.
Half way down the block PB started saying things like, “It’s so hot under here” and “I can’t see where I’m going” and “You’re getting kind of heavy”. I suggested ditching the fun idea. The next moment is still a blur for me. I tried to slide off his shoulders and he tried to let me down easy, but something went terribly wrong. I heard a crunch in the midst of arms and legs and a tangle of bed linens and hard pavement.
An hour later, in the hospital emergency room, a nice nurse finished wrapping my colorful swollen ankle — the ligaments were badly torn. She asked, “How did this happen?” Wiping away tears of pain I replied, “I was getting off him and my foot got caught in the sheets.”
There was a moment of silence as we all processed what I said. In an effort to explain further, PB said, “We were trick-or-treating.” The nurse smiled and quickly discharged me.
It was a memorable date. I’ve been wary of PB’s fun ideas ever since.