As we head to the airport in the dark of a daylight-savings-time morning, my husband says, ”Choose some music, anything you want. Pick something with a green arrow. That means I’ve downloaded it from Spotify.”
I really don’t like this job, the designated music (wo)man, the pressure. My husband is the musician, and he has an unbelievable assortment of options, running the genre gamut. But I’m the navigator, so I scroll, scroll, scroll and stop. “This Is Dire Straits.” If you use Spotify, then you know that the site features an extensive “This Is…” for almost every musician, a collection of music spanning their careers.And it’s a winner, this collection. We haven’t heard it in so long.
I have always loved Mark Knopfler and his band, Dire Straits. Right away, I am transported back to a summer evening three decades ago in August, the moon full, the sky velvety, the air kind. My husband and I are standing outside the car on Route 37 getting gas. New Jersey, like Oregon, is not a pump-your-own state, so why we are standing on either side of our Celica, beats me.
Dire Straits is playing, melody drifting through the open windows, when one of my favorite songs of all time begins. Familiar notes and then the lyrics: “A love-struck Romeo sings a sweet song serenade…” It’s from Making Movies, ”Romeo and Juliet.” This is the perfect moment for that song, this beautiful night. We are pregnant at long last, and the sweetness of this moment brings me to tears.
I turn away from the moon, spin to face my husband across the top of our car. As our eyes connect, he croons, ”Hey la, my boyfriend’s back, ” and smiles, the perfect accompaniment to my joy.
We will arrive safely in Portland and listen to Dire Straits the entire journey, transported.