In Praise of a Good Man: One Writer’s Companion

wooded path 7.13My husband is a good man. Traveling with him is such a pleasure. Our camping trip to Mt. Rainier provides numerous examples. Among the many, many things he does that make me appreciate him so:

He lugs all the stuff out to the van (and back in when we get home), including my crate of books, drawing materials, tablet–the electronic kind, and journals.

He is a wonder at setting up camp, tying knots, building a cozy nest for us to sleep in, creating a canopy when it rains, building fires, and all other forms of activity that make “roughing it” a pleasure.

When we hike, he is patient with my constantly stopping to take notes or capture an observation or turn of phrase every hundred feet, every fifty feet, and even at intervals of every ten feet.

He photographs the things I want to remember or am trying to describe.

He engages in wordplay with me and lets me use his phrases.

He joins me in crafting our own names for the natural features we see: Snaggle-Tooth for a rock formation that just down over the road, Party Hat Jr. for a mountain peak that reminded us of Party Hat (our name for the Grand Teton), Cliffhanger Highway–many of the roads through Mt. Rainier National Park, and The Fortress for a rock formation near the summit.

Knowing my sense of balance is definitely not one of my strengths, he always offers his hand for rail-less stairways, slippery slopes, or rough patches of trail.

He lugs the camera and the water, even if they are in my lavender and brown flowered back pack.

He picks up litter left by other hikers.

He mourns the graffiti on glacier-scraped rock.

He thanks God for the beauty of our surroundings, our adventures together, our food–even meager campfire rations, and me.

He is a joy to travel with and to be creative with. All he requires is supplies for a good cup of coffee in the morning, which he is more than willing to make himself.

How does your one-and-only support you and your writing life?