I have had a request from my husband. He wants me to remove his name and all pictures of him from my blog. This is going to be a big task and I'm equally sure that once I start, he'll have a rethink and decide it really isn't a problem after all. However, he has asked me to do it and I will respect his wishes. I will therefore refer to him as FR from now on. All will be clear.
These past few months have been very important for my FR as he has been working in Granada at the wonderful theatre space at the foot of the Alhambra that has been made available to him by the Junta (or local goverment) of Andalucia. He's been running a course designed for actors, based on the theory, philosophy and writings of Edward Bond, arguably Britain's greatest living playwright. It was surprisingly well-attended (considering FR is an unknown teacher and his subject was a somewhat controversial British author) and it has been extremely well-received, with some wonderful feedback that must have really warmed FR's cockles and other parts. They warmed mine.
FR can say his wife does not understand him. It's not entirely true, of course, but at times it's a close description of our relationship. We have overcome the language barrier to a greater or lesser extent - though now the boot is on the other foot and it's me that at times appears to be a bit deaf; who forgets an instruction; who can't seem to grasp a vital bit of information; who can't write a telephone number down accurately. All of which was FR when we lived in England. It's a language thing. There are times when no matter how good a command of a language a 'foreigner' might have, there are some things that just don't go in. I have accused FR of not listening to me on many an occasion in the past as he would fail to do something I'd specifically asked, or he'd ask me a question about something I'd just finished providing an answer for - as if he was trying to be funny or something. Which he wasn't. The children laughed from time to time as he did this so often.
Now it's me that has cloth ears and sometimes just can't quite get what is being asked of me or what I am being told. It's me who is slow on the uptake when we're out with a crowd or family group. And I'll have to accept that it might always be a bit like this. It's frustrating and explains a lot about some of FR's reactions in the past.
Why FR? Well, one thing about my husband is that he is not exactly the predictable type - apart from knowing that you will never quite know what he will do in any given situation. This definitely makes life fun/exhausting/maddening/exciting (depending on the time of the month, I find) and certainly never boring. He's a revolutionary at heart and almost always has a radical solution to propose for any problem - and I love the definitions available in the The Free Dictionary for the word 'radical':
1. Arising from or going to a root or source; basic: proposed a radical solution to the problem.
2. Departing markedly from the usual or customary; extreme: radical opinions on education.
3. Favoring or effecting fundamental or revolutionary changes in current practices, conditions, or institutions: radical political views.
4. Linguistics Of or being a root: a radical form.
5. Botany Arising from the root or its crown: radical leaves.
6. Slang Excellent; wonderful.
He's radical. And definitely free as in a free thinker.
And free radicals are crucial, combustible atoms or molecules that are vitally important to our chemical makeup but which equally can be dangerous or harmful - and whilst FR is not usually either of these things, I do like to think of him as a 'dangerous free radical' - a term which caught my attention many years ago (in connection with some night cream, I think) as a particularly good one for the somewhat fierce, charged, attractive man I have married. Of whom I am inordinately proud despite - and in spite of - our occasional verbal misunderstandings. And as we are told, between two people, around 60% of communication is non-verbal anyway. Which is nice to know.
So goodbye to photos containing my lovely FR husband, I shall be removing them slowly but surely over the coming days. And when I've managed to establish why this is necessary - through verbal or other means - I'll let you know. Though I probably know why already.