On Always Wanting To Touch

My ex-husband and I took a drive to San Francisco when we were dating in 2008. I was 18 and he was turning 21 that weekend. We spent the entire roadtrip listening to music; he was a fan of Theory of a Deadman and Hinder and I tried introducing him to the Beatles and Beach Boys. We took the Pontiac Sunfire, and the trunk latch broke on the way up. With nothing to tie it down, it banged repeatedly up and down as we cruised along Pacific Coast Highway. 

When we reached San Fran, we tried finding a place from which to see the Golden Gate Bridge. We drove down to an old and abandoned military base on the banks of the bay. We parked, and he wandered off to find a place to pee. 

While I waited for him, I gazed over the three foot high wall that faced the bay. Leaning as far over it as I could, I could see rocks below. There was something on the rocks that was moving. 

I jumped over the wall, landing on the rocks so I could get a closer look. I bent down, reached my hand out, and- 

“Dammit, why do you have to touch everything?!”

My ex stood over me on the wall, shaking his head. 

“You don’t know if that’s poisonous!”

It became a running joke during our relationship. 

“She always has to touch.” 

After a year or so, he stopped saying it with a smile and I think he finally understood that he was married to someone who always had to touch, to find out more, to push the boundaries, to see how stuff worked and why it worked, even if it was poisonous.

I have been told that I have a voracious appetite for things and people; to understand and completely devour them. I almost certainly always want more…and I end up drowning those too weak to handle me.

I hope that if my ex is asked about me, he shakes his head and says, “She always had to touch.” That would be romantic… 

And also a load of shit. That dude despises me. But what happened with me led him to a nice lady who is his equal and who makes him happy and that’s romantic enough for me.