Another Spectrum

Personal ramblings and rants of a somewhat twisted mind

A long journey, but oh so quick


Fifty years ago today, in the privacy of a suite in a ryokan (Japanese style inn), the wife prostrated herself in front of me and vowed to be a good, dutiful and obedient wife. I suppose some new husbands might delight in such a moving offer, but I was shocked and appalled. That was not what I envisioned. I had grown up in a very egalitarian society and in a whānau that was even more so.

I had seen in her – and still do – a wilful, independent spirit that was at the same time, tender, gentle, wild and fierce. What she was offering was servitude. What I wanted was someone to share my life with – as equal partners. For life. I don’t recall exactly what I said in response, but I remember lifting her up from the floor and (apparently crossly, according to the wife) telling her that if that was what she wanted, we may as well end the relationship right now, as I wanted her to be herself, my partner and friend, not my servant.

I’ve made many mistakes during my life, and I sometimes joke that my biggest mistake was telling the wife I didn’t want her to be obedient. It certainly has made life more unpredictable and challenging, but oh so wonderful – exciting even. I still sometimes wonder what she saw in me – a reserved, socially awkward undiagnosed autistic, not known for expressing or showing emotions. Certainly not handsome by western standards, more exotic than handsome by Japanese standards of the day, but she often reminds me that my patience, sense of fairness, absence of negativity and being ridiculously accepting and tolerant of alternative beliefs and perspectives attracted her, and my declaration in that ryokan confirmed her choice. She makes a point of emphasising ‘ridiculously‘ at times as she often finds tolerating my tolerance very difficult.

Fifty years seem to have flown by in less than a blink of an eye. I have spent 70% of my life with a woman who is both delightful and charming yet at times tests my patience and tolerance almost to breaking point. But I wouldn’t have wanted it any other way. We really have shared out delights and dispairs together.

As to the future, there’s little chance of another fifty years together, but with a history of longevity in both our families, another twenty to twenty-five years is a distinct possibility. I sincerely hope that those years pass at a more leisurely pace than those already gone for no other reason than to delight in the company of the person I have grown to love in a way I never thought possible.

It’s unlikely that she will read this post – she’s never asked me to provide her with a link to my blog – but I wish to extend a public expression of my gratitude for having her as my life partner. So thank you Sayoko, my Honey-chan, for being my friend, confidante and lover.

Author: Barry

A post war baby boomer from Aotearoa New Zealand who has lived with migraines for as long as I can remember and discovered I am autistic at the age of sixty. I blog because in real life I'm somewhat backwards about coming forward with my opinions.

11 thoughts on “A long journey, but oh so quick

  1. Here’s to at least another 50 years.

    • Thank you. Let’s see, that would make the wife and I 123 and 122 respectively. It’s a target worth aiming for even if we never make it 🙂

  2. this is beautiful, Barry. Sentimental even

  3. I put down my tolerance levels to forgetfulness. As I just don’t remember the times some people have pissed me off often enough. I just blindly carry on being my happy self with them, much to the surprise of onlookers and themselves.

    • People don’t piss me off. Perhaps I just don’t take anything personally

      • Not personally, but it was hard t’other day when I just politely said to some bloke “Sweetie, your mask has slipped down” and then him pulling it right down and giving me a full spitty explaination that it’s all some sort of conspiracy! Thing is I will more than likely see him again and not remember it was him. He did piss me off, I did try not to react, but did say something to the effect that I might “See you next Tuesday”. {{{laughing}}}

  4. Good on you Barry

    • I think I have been very fortunate in that circumstances have allowed me to make the choices I have. Most people aren’t as fortunate.

  5. Congratulations, and may your happiness together increase.

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s