They met not in the first blush of youth, nor even in its sigh. They were both well into their forties, with clear ideas of who they were and what they wanted. And yet, when they met, when they hooked up for the first time, it was explosive. Smitten, he told her that he’d build her a palace, a grand home, nestled on a sweet suburban street. She smiled sweetly, tried to tell him that a grand home on a suburban street wasn’t really her thing. But a few weeks later, eyes sparkling, he unfurled the blueprints. The house was huge just as he had promised. Even to her unpracticed eye it seemed that the term “nestled” in reference to how the house squatted on the lot was putting it too kindly. To be accurate, the house was more crammed than nestled on the quarter acre. On the same day they got married they broke ground. They posed for pictures, she in her white wedding gown, he in his tuxedo. They framed their favorite picture of the two of them, one foot each resting gently on a brand new spade shovel, the tip of which dug into the compacted dirt. There were delays in construction. Their friends chuckled as one angry story after another commandeered the conversation and told the newlyweds it was to be expected. And while the sex was still hot they seemed to have lost their way. Finally, the house was ready. A house she had never wanted and he had come to hate. They lasted in their perfectly appointed new home through Christmas and then abandoned the house to the hungry realtors, to move back to her cramped, rent controlled studio apartment to try again.