My Tryst With Ted Bundy

The year was 2004. The city was Playa del Carmen, Mexico. Handsome and I were there to celebrate our wedding anniversary, and quite against my will I was being seduced and absorbed by another man.

Ted Bundy. Yes, that Ted Bundy. The serial killer.

I’m not proud of this. But neither am I terribly ashamed.

 

This moment in our love story will live down in infamy.

Yours Truly with Ted Bundy, the Summer of 2004. One of several such photos by Handsome. This moment in our love story will live down in infamy.

 

I am sharing this with you fine people for two reasons. First, because Mama Kat http://www.mamakatslosinit.com/, in all of her infinite wisdom, has asked us to dig deep into our histories, ten years deep to be exact. She has asked us to share a photo of ourselves from 2004 and compare it to ourselves now.

I am also sharing this with you fine people because this photo represents a rather sore spot in my otherwise dazzling love story with Handsome. A tiny little fly in the ointment, I’ll admit, although good grief I have laughed so hard about it over the years! So telling this story publicly needs to happen. The healing needs to begin.

I’ll tell you how much the healing needs to begin: While typing this story I asked my sweet guy to verify the name of the city in Mexico where all of this took place, and his eyes flamed. He even stopped playing his video game.  ”You don’t even remember?! You were so caught up with what’s-his-name that you can’t even remember the name of the city we were in??” Then he shook his head too forcefully and went back to his video game. “Playa del Carmen,” he mumbled, “you should know that.”

Once again, I laughed so hard. You have to understand how rarely my husband gets jealous. It’s a rare romantic gift that delights me, and I realize that is horrible.

Back to Summer 2004.

Handsome and I were leaving Oklahoma City, just the two of us, to seek the hot sands and tranquil waters of the Gulf of Mexico. We were so excited, and with good reason. I mean, when does a married couple not need a trip alone to anywhere beachy? I know.

Before driving to Dallas for our overnight wait, we stopped at the grocery store for road trip snacks and at the library for books.

Allow me to repeat: We both checked out books for pleasure reading during our trip. Neither of us disputes this fact, but also neither of us can remember any of the other books we borrowed from the Metropolitan Library System. Just the Ted Bundy story stands out in our pained collective memory.

So we drove cheerily south to our Dallas hotel, no doubt flirting with each other and jamming out to really good early 90′s rap all the way. It’s kind of our go-to road trip music. I don’t remember exactly when I would have first pried open that paperback book by Ann Rule, but by Dallas I was hooked. Perhaps you can see the seriousness on my face in the photo above, taken by my already frustrated husband of just three years. Perhaps you can see I didn’t even bother to unpack anything before crashing with this stranger.

Perhaps you agree my forehead is too shiny.

I should point out that this was long before I had a blog for recording my book reviews. I didn’t even know at that time that normal people were allowed to write book reviews. Didn’t you need a Presidential pardon? Or to be knighted by the Queen? No such plans for me. I was very simply enthralled by an excellent story and glued to its pages. My husband grew less and less amused by my amusement.

Apparently the deeper I fell down the morbid, twisted rabbit hole that was the story of Ted Bundy’s 1970′s wickedness, the more difficulty Handsome had in getting my attention. He claims that by the time we reached Mexico he had to say my name three or four times to break my hypnotic gaze, and getting me to go anywhere without that paperback appendage was impossible. Including to the elegant pineapple-and-espresso breakfast spread at our resort. Including to the pristine white beach with no children. Including to our vacation bed.

He exaggerates. It’s really embarrassing.

Anyway. This book was incredible. It was written from the perspective of a young woman who actually kn…

Wait, I’m slipping down the T.B. rabbit hole again. Sorry. Suffice it to say that I wasn’t avoiding my wonderful husband; I was having a great time with him in Mexico! I was just also deeply, widely, thoroughly fascinated by the ed-Tay undy-Bay story. (I try not to say his name too often. It’s… provoking.)

All told, we were in Mexico for almost a week, and if my sweet, lonely husband’s version of the truth can be trusted, it was halfway through that week before I would swim in the ocean or dine with him making full eye contact, undistracted by you-know-who. I feel a little bad about that. What I do not feel bad about is becoming fully educated on the dangerous wiles of a serial killer and simultaneously being absorbed by the story telling prowess of a woman who, somehow, survived him.

Rabbit hole!

So that’s the story of my tryst with Ted Bundy. How am I different ten years later?

Ironically, I read far more now than I did then. But never, I mean almost never, at the beach with my husband, and also never at dinner. In fact  to this day I am reluctant to bring a book on any trip with my long suffering husband, lest it should prove to be as wickedly fascinating and distracting as that. Fat chance, but still.

Be better than me, friends. Pay attention to your man on vacation and read on the side.

And if you know Handsome in 3-D, I double dog dare you to strike up a conversation with him about the Lady Killer.

XOXOXOXO

30 thoughts on “My Tryst With Ted Bundy

  1. I would not advise provoking on this one in person….. :) And it was the end of the week before I got eye contact…….not mid-week…..

        1. Kelly. Oh I cannot wait to find this guy. Thank you for understanding! If an elegant, educated woman like you can fall prey, then I feel better about myself, haha! xoxo

  2. So, I have a confession to make…I am eat up with true crime. I watch Dateline Mystery and read about crime too. I know that book, and I understand how you were captivated. Ann Rule is a good storyteller. Have you read Devil in the White City? It’s an amazing read too. True story about Chicago during the World’s Exposition. There’s a serial killer too Marie. Have I tempted you yet?~~Dee

    1. Why is true crime so intensely fascinating? I can’t get enough. Love Nazi stuff too, which is weird. Handsome DVR’s it for me constantly and rolls his eyes. haha
      So cool that you’ve read this particular book; wasn’t it well done? And yes you have tempted me with Devil in the White City, heading to Goodreads to add it now, LOL Thanks for reading Dee!! xoxo

    2. Dee, great recommendation! I am halfway through Devil in the White City right now for my ATX book club meeting coming up in a couple of weeks. Marie, you’ll love “Dr. Holmes.” Crazy mo-fo. Seriously.

    1. haha!! Heather I KNOW! Wasn’t it so very good?? My gosh, I feel liberated, all these amazing women who also found that book addicting. haha I had the exact thought process that year… I’d like to meet the guy, but what’s wrong with me?? Thanks for reading, ma’am!

  3. This is too funny!! I love true crime too. I’ll have to give you some titles that you may not have read yet. I will definitely be discussing Ed-tay Undy-bay with BW!! I never would have guessed this picture was ten years old. Seriously. You look the same. Unbiased BFF opinion! :-)

    1. Hey lady You’re a true crime junkie?? Yet one more thing we have in common. I am not surprised! As for the 10 years, thank you! xoxo I just finally got rid of that pink t shirt recently because I had splattered weird paint all over it. LOL Thank you for reading!

  4. Wow Marie…You are such a good writer, I think I could tryst out with your blog post book reviews! I love that you LET yourself tryst with a book! I love that you visited the library and then took the books to Mexico! (did they get a page stamped too?) But mostly, I just thoroughly enjoyed reading the story and sharing in a bit of your life and loves. Keep writing!

    1. haha thank you Jackie! The true stories are the most fun to write, for sure. I appreciate you reading so much. And the more I think about this event in our history the more I wonder if we were really allowed to take those borrowed books out of country?? I do not know! LOL

  5. I laughed out loud reading this! Awesome. There is a road trip we made as a family for my grandmother’s 80th birthday that I was less than available due to an affair with a book as well – East of Eden. I am well aware that reading Steinbeck is not nearly as glamorous, but I too was sucked in to the rabbit hole.

    1. Hi Emily, so nice to meet you! LOL I am so glad you liked this, and really glad you understand. haha East of Eden is on my list too, so you’ve made it sound more interesting.
      I think the mark of a really good book must be that it creates that rabbit hole, making the reader powerless to put it down. I want ot write that book some day. [:))]
      have a wonderful day! xo

  6. I remember being a young girl in Florida at the time all that was going on. Especially the FSU sorority house murders. I bet the story was suspenseful. I do love to read at the beach. It’s almost a guilty pleasure.

    1. Those sorority murders were horrible. I got seriously invested in the community, in my mind, while reading. So sad, and also fascinating how many people fell prey. Unreal.
      Thanks for stopping by Jamie! I am so relieved I’m not the only woman who loves true crime novels. LOL

  7. I just love the image of you, in my head and in the picture, curled up with a book from which you cannot part. What is happier than that? I am not a true crime junkie but I’m pretty sure I have got to check this one out.

    1. Brittany, there are few such earthly pleasures, right? And one day soon I will be curling up with YOUR paperback, unable to peel away. xoxo Thank you so much for reading!

  8. Ah…Ted. All these years later, and he is still drawing the ladies! I read about him in my undergrad years. That was a scary, scary man. At least you got to read about him in a nice, sunny spot!

    1. haha! I know, sorta creepy right? Cannot tell you many times I have questioned my mental soundness over this. LOL
      And even reading it at the beach, I was creeped OUT. haha
      Thanks for stopping by! [:))]

    1. Megan! Please go read this book, and be safe out there in the world. But do not neglect your guy like I did! LOL [:-((]
      The book is by Ann Rule, non fiction, a really well told story about how she got to know Ted Bundy and how she viewed the crime spree from her life’s perspective. Incredible stuff. Thank you for stopping by! xo

  9. This made me laugh so much! Now I want to read the book, but as riveted as I am by true crime, it totally terrifies me. When I saw the first photo and that you were obsessed with the Ted Bundy story, I thought “Of course she was, she looks exactly like someone he would have targeted.” Your husband should THANK YOU for educating yourself and probably saving your own life by doing so!!!

    1. My gosh, Mama Kat. It was a GREAT read! Please do find it. So terrifying, in a CANNOT LOOK AWAY sort of fashion. Read it!
      As for the “I look like a Ted Bundy target” observation, I just don’t know what to say… haha… ??
      But I will tell my husband he should be thankful I educated myself! LOL
      Thanks so much for stopping by! xoxo That was a super fun prompt.

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