Jethro's idea of a picnic.
An established relationship story.
Written: September 2007. Word count: 847.
When Jethro declared that he was going to take me on a picnic to ‘cheer me up', I must confess to being less than enthusiastic about the idea.
Oh, of course I did not let my beloved see my lack of enthusiasm, not at all. After all when someone goes to the trouble of organizing something to please you, or giving you a gift, it is churlish and ill mannered to be anything other than grateful, and to express your thanks and pleasure. Thus when Jethro told me that he would pick me up and we'd go for a picnic, I was duly polite and thanked him and expressed pleasure.
However, really I was not looking forward to spending an afternoon sitting on the ground. I know Jethro gets a little irritated if I mention my age, but my leg has grown stiffer and more painful over the years, and I much prefer my comfortable armchairs, or better still the sofa, with Jethro by my side and his arm around me. Nor was I looking forward to spending the afternoon trying to keep the fauna and flora out of the food, nor of eating off paper-plates with plastic utensils, that never cut properly, nor . . .
But no, I really am being completely, unacceptably and unforgivably ungrateful. Jethro was doing this for me, because he thought, he believed, that it would please me. Besides, I will never object to spending time with my beloved. Never.
I was duly waiting for him at the agreed time to collect me and he arrived as expected, he is a very punctual man, is my Jethro.
We passed a very enjoyable twenty minutes or so before Jethro declared that we should leave. I confess that for a moment I gave serious consideration to advancing our enjoyment somewhat, and enticing my dearest up to my bed. However, he seemed so keen on the idea of a picnic that I did not wish to disappoint him.
Thus after securely locking up my home, we got into his car and he drove away. We were chatting away, as we often do, I believe I might have been telling him one of my stories, when I suddenly realized that we were heading towards Jethro's home. I expressed surprise and he muttered something about having forgotten a corkscrew.
I should have realized than that something was amiss; the idea that Jethro of all people would have forgotten something is so very out of character. Besides, he was a Marine and he always carries a knife; it wouldn't be the first time that he has had to improvise. Nonetheless I simply accepted him at his word.
When we reached his home, I settled back in my seat to wait for him. However, he insisted that I accompany him inside. I do not recall the actual reason, if any, he gave me, but it must have sounded logical at the time, because join him I did.
Once in his house, he again surprised me as, rather than go into the kitchen, which I know is where he keeps him corkscrews, he walked towards the sitting room and, by virtue of continuing to talk to me, urged me to follow him. Of course I did, when someone is conversing with you, it is bad manners to make them shout in order to continue the conversation.
Thus, I followed him and . . .
And I quickly discovered what Leroy Jethro Gibbs's idea of a picnic was.
It involved his coffee table being covered with a table cloth, I confess I did not know he possessed one, upon which laid real napkins, china plates and dishes, real cutlery and wine glasses. He had moved the table slightly so that it was in front of the sofa, with enough room to enable one to sit comfortably, but also not too far away so that one had to stand up to fill one's plate.
Then after briefly kissing me, taking my hat and coat, he did head for the kitchen, not for the corkscrew, that really was in the sitting room, lying by the wine glasses, but for the food. And excellent food it was too; admittedly it was not homemade, at least not by Jethro, my beloved is many things, but a cook, he is not, but it was of superb quality.
I later discovered that, in fact, the food was the combined efforts of Abigail and Ziva. Jethro had asked Abigail from where he could procure a good picnic and she had taken it upon herself to enlist Ziva's help in producing it.
Jethro's sofa is quite as comfortable as my own, especially when, once we had eaten more than enough, he put his arm around me and encouraged (not that I needed any encouragement) me to cuddle up to him.
And his bed, to where we eventually retired with the remainder of the second bottle of wine, is even more comfortable.
One day maybe my dearest might cease to surprise me, but secretly I hope he never does.
Breakfast In Bed is the sequel to this story.
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