Home Sweet Home
Gordon, my husband, always he say—too much the mess, the kids, the TV, the toys, the talking. Canadian men, Russian men, all same. Now he say he must working. Always, “So much working.” I not believe. Funeral business is same, all year. Same Russia, same here. But, now he no yell so much.
Then one day Peter is phone from work, and I say, “Gordon working, right there under nose!” But Gordon is no there, and no answer cell phone. Then I know—other woman, secretary. Always secretary. Always young. Always pretty. So I looking and I find bills. Gordon, he buy CD player and chair! Also food and wine. So I know he is go live with her. I will be like TV soap opera, knock on door and shouting, “Is my husband here?” and then scratch her eyes.
Next weekend, I following him in car he buy me for shopping groceries. He drive to big warehouse, unlock door, and go in. Big sign say “U-Store-It.” More people come, so I go in door with them. Canadians nice to foreign lady. But inside is no stores. Is many big metal doors like garage. All locked up. I walking and then I see light. Then I see Gordon. But Gordon himself only. Very, very small place. He in chair. He wearing parka coat, reading book, eating cookies, listening headphones. Gordon smiling.
And I am wishing is woman.
Why is better this than me?
—First prize winner in Writers' Union of Canada Postcard Contest, 2005
Mary J. Breen is a writer and editor living in Peterborough, Ontario, Canada, where she teaches memoir writing. She has published two books about women's health, as well as essays, articles and short fiction in various publications.