The evening is warm as you walk with your wife down the avenue. She doesn’t like to wear dresses, but she wears one now, a sundress that shows off her olive skin. You notice men noticing her. Her shyness makes her less beautiful than she could be, but sometimes even she can’t hide it. She is significantly more attractive than you, with high cheekbones, symmetrical features, and shapely legs from college track. She has a bob of brown hair and the most perfect ears. In addition, she is both funny and smart. You were surprised when you found out she was single, even more when she married you.

After five years together, you feel you have disappointed her in several small ways, one being that you still sell insurance, a job that was both temporary and beneath you—until it was neither. Another is that you spent your first three years of marriage in the suburbs, where everyone was growing up or growing old. No one was like you and your wife—thirty and childless and wanting to keep it that way.

You crave energy and excitement, and to this end you have bought a beautiful condo downtown in the “bohemian quarter,” as the realtor pitched it, which means that it’s cheap enough for artists and poor black people. That’s okay. You love art and hate racism. You like adventure, and so does your wife.

People on couch
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