When you’ve been married as long as I have, you tend to believe that there are no more surprises. You know each other’s quirks, eating habits, sleeping patterns and occasional bodily noises.

But imagine my surprise, if you will, when the wife recently demonstrated a talent I did not know she had.

We both love yard work. She plants and tends all of the flower gardens and I maintain the lawn and shrubbery.

Well, about three months ago the wife asked, “Would you like me to do the trimming?”

My jaw hit the floor. I did not know what to say. She was definitely outside the box.

“But, but, but,” I said stuttering in shock. “That is usually my area of expertise. I have a certain pattern for weed whacking. Are you sure you want to tackle this?”

Very confidently the wife said, “I slap a battery in the trimmer and squeeze the trigger. I think I can handle this.”

“Well, I guess if you’re sure you can do it, go ahead. Just call me if you get into trouble,” I said nervously handing her the trimmer. “I once saw a guy wrap his trimmer line around forsythia and he totally got sucked into that bush. It took the fire department two hours to free him.”

“Didn’t you help him when he got caught?”

“Heck no. Someone had to get the video. Hilarious!”

Well, the wife went to work and let me tell you, she was a natural. I have never seen someone so confidently maneuver a weed-whacker. She could trim around trees, patios, pools and ponds. She could whack along flower beds, driveways, sidewalks and curbs. She even succeeded in trimming around our forsythia without incident (even though I had my phone video camera ready to go).

When she was finished, she handed me the trimmer and said, “Well, what do you think? How did I do?”

I walked around the yard and inspected her work. It was amazing. If there was a weed-whacker Olympic team, I would have her try out. She’d be a shoo-in.

Her angle was perfection. Her depth … unbelievable. When I looked closely I think she actually got down to magma … (there were faint smells of sulfur). And the speed and efficiency with which she accomplished the job was stellar.

“Honey,” I said after my thorough inspection. “You are phenomenal at weed whacking. I had no idea. How could you have hidden this talent from me for so many years? I have never been more attracted to you.”

“I like to save a few surprises to spice things up,” she said coyly.

This, my friends, is how you keep a marriage fresh.

Raul Ascunce is a freelance columnist for the Sentinel-Tribune. He may be contacted at RaulAscunce@gmail.com.

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