It’s not that he couldn’t pay attention, nor was it a matter of a higher priority. Rather it became, over time, a case where he could no longer discern her voice especially when there were any competing voices. The announcement of their son’s angagement totally escaped him; as did his wife’s declaration that she intended to return to work. Significant or transitory, he missed hearing about most events to the point that he suspected he’d become an alzheimerist. Alas, the words he regretted missing the most were the words from his wife as she stood in the threshold of the front door, packed suitcase in hand. Was she leaving him or just on her way to visit with their son and daughter-in-law? Ah well, only time would tell.