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Though born and raised in Yonkers, NY, Carol is a true laidback southern Californian. Even her rules tend to be expressed more as suggestions. I think that in my case, though, she’s learning her suggestions should be stated more as rules. I respond better to rules. In day to day life and behavior, I’m more golden retriever than actual human being.
Take neatness. Evidently, my definition of the term is somewhat more expansive than Carol’s. Unpacking in the Big Bear Lake cabin for our first true road trip together, Carol softly suggested to me, “I don’t like clutter.” I agreeably replied, “Neither do I.” But I picked up on her discerning gaze around the room that struck me as more of a security camera’s attention to detail, and I straightened up to the best of my ability. Carol sighed and managed a wan smile of approval for my efforts.