It was the second day of an eight-day trip to Europe when Linda asked me for a divorce. Actually, she never used the term divorce. She simply said, “I think we should break up.” My reply was, “We can’t break up. We’re married. It’s called getting divorced, or at least legally separated.” Her reply was, “I want to get legally separated.”

I didn’t even want to go on the trip, because we were having problems. I wanted to cancel it. At worse, I’d have to pay a penalty to change the plane tickets. But she said, “I want to work things out.”

It’s funny, that night before dinner, we both got Thai massages. The masseuse offered me a handy, and I said, “Thank you, but I can’t take you up on that. I’m married.” She was really impressed with me, smiled and told me I was good man. That night we went out for Italian food. Sub-par to say the best. We drank two bottles of wine. That’s one thing we still had in common, we liked to drink. We went to back to the hotel, and that’s when she said it, “I think we should break up.” I went to the bathroom and threw up.

This should have been a fun vacation. I was travelling through the the former realm of the Habsburgs and I was utterly depressed, but fascinated with each city. The next morning we went to the Buda side of the Danube, and went to Buda Castle. Buda Castle, by the way, has a great exhibit about the Battle of Budapest. It was one of the biggest battles of WWII, and lasted for six months. Hungarian soldiers literally changed sides in the middle of the battle. The Nazis retreated to the Buda side and held out for months, even though they had no chance of winning. Just like I had no chance of winning my wife back.

I thought to myself, “I should have taken that handy.”


Author: Joseph Greene