Help! I'm trapped in a bad relationship and I don't know how to get out.

Would the up-in-the-air goose-down fiasco mark the end of Lorna’s doomed relationship?

Not yet.

I was beginning to understand why Olga/Ingrid disappeared without a trace. She probably joined the Federal Witness Protection  Program to get away from him. I was ready to vanish, too; but how?

Until then, every boyfriend left me. I had lots of practice at being wounded; none at being the wound-er. I needed a plan.  Deceit
seemed like it would work.  I made up excuses every time he called, hoping that he would eventually get the hint. I had headaches; my grandmother died… twice; I may have an STD.

Brian knew what I was up to and didn’t like it.  He couldn’t stand to lose anything.  Whether Brian was talking about fish, comforters, or women (all the same to him), the one that got away was the one he coveted the most. For him, the bird in his hand was useless—he’d  toss it aside every time for a chance at getting the elusive one in the bush. In Brian’s world (and there was no other), he would end the relationship or dispense with the object, not the other way around.  The upper hand was his only hand.  And he wasn’t ready to end his relationship with me, feather debacle notwithstanding.

One blustery spring day he telephoned and he begged me to go canoeing with him–one of his many self-proclaimed outdoor Olympic-caliber accomplishments. This invitation was particularly objectionable, since I avoided water sports like I was trying to avoid this particular water sportsman. I adamantly refused. He persisted. Exhausted, I finally gave in. Hanging up never occurred to me. I was never good in emergency situations.

I knew Brian had something less than honorable in mind when I saw where we were canoeing. Instead of a small mountain pond, he  chose a huge lake that was riled up due to stiff spring winds and constant turbulence from draining rivers and streams over-flowing from rain and snow-melt. Rarely did even the heartiest of nautical fools find themselves tempted by the cold, gray, menacing waters of this big lake only weeks after the ice has mysteriously disappeared.

I was a virgin canoe-er and Brian took me out in ice-cold waters like this.

We “put in” in a little fast-moving river that was close to the lake.  He assured me that we wouldn’t go very far.  Brian knew that I didn’t like being in fresh water in anything smaller than a 40-foot cabin cruiser. I’m not a great swimmer and I’m a klutz when it comes to anything that can slip, tilt, or roll.

“Why isn’t there anyone else here?” I queried nervously.

Brian assured me that his canoe was as sea-worthy as a submarine and his command of the vessel was legendary.

“That’s great, but why isn’t there anyone else here?”  I wasn’t comforted by his confidence.

“Trust me. Get in. You’ll love it!” We were on our way.

What did Brian have in mind for his sub-par, substitute Icelandic Dream Girl?