Thursday, October 14, 2010

alright, here are the details...

Stephanie and I are engaged. Here's how it happened:

Her dad had a speaking engagement in Barcelona, and invited her and her brother to go along. Stephanie decided to head out a week early and travel around - solo - before meeting up with her family in Barcelona.

Obviously she tried to get me to go along, but as soon as I learned of her plans to travel I knew it was the perfect opportunity to propose. I had been waiting and thinking and planning all summer. But I wasn't ready and no idea I came up with was right. It was difficult to keep it a secret. She took my backpack, my electrical converter, travel towel... all my stuff I usually travel with. Plus she really really wanted me to come along - and I had to keep saying I can't, my boss won't let me, can't afford it, etc. I even wrote her a handful of notes to read while she was gone to throw her off track. By the time I took her to the airport I felt really bad for letting her go alone...

...but of course I wasn't letting her go alone - not entirely. She left on a Friday. I left the following Monday. My very first flight was delayed due to troubles with the plane, so I missed my connection in Dallas. Which meant I spent the night in Dallas, courtesy of American Airlines. They gave me a room in lovely Irving, TX and a few bucks for food, but I still wasted a whole day of my vacation sitting in a hotel with nothing to do for miles around.

Anyway, I finally made it to Granada a day or so behind. I knew she had a flight scheduled from Granada to Barcelona on a particular day because I helped her plan, I bought the same ticket shortly after her.

Anyway, after all the delays and waiting in airports, by the time I got to Granada I was feeling a bit discouraged. Plus I hadn't heard from her in a couple days. I started thinking, "this is a dumb idea, I'll never find her." I checked into a cheap hotel and headed for the hostel she was planning on staying at. I asked the front desk if she had checked in. She had not. I called her. She did not answer. She finally sent me a text, and I responded...see below...

She was quite surprised with that text, called me right away, didn't believe me at first. I sort of ruined my own plan, which was to find her on my own and propose on the spot. I think it ended up working out better though. She showed up to the hostel with 2 friends she had met in Seville, and that would have just been awkward. So we (the 4 of us) hung out in Granada, saw some sights, ate tapas. Stephanie and I made plans to watch the sunrise together the next morning, and I tried to make sure it was just us.

So, the next morning we met bright and early - actually dark and early - and made our way through the narrow and winding streets in the old Muslim quarter, up the hill to Plaza Mirado de San Nicolàs. Still dark out.

We sat on a bench with an incredible view of the city, and I went into my little speech I had thought through the night before - most of which I forgot and stumbled through. She had no idea what I was talking about until I got down on my knee and asked her to be my wife. "And to prove that I'm serious," I said, "I have a ring" and brought out the little black box. I told her she couldn't see the ring until she answered. She said yes.

We took a lot of photos of us on self-timer, photos of the view, the bench we were sitting on, the plaza, waiting for the sun to come and just enjoying the moment. There was another couple that showed up by then, taking photos etc. Stephanie asked them to take this photo of us (below), and she told them we just got engaged. I told them they were the first people we told. They were kind of weird-ed out.


blythe said...

congrats Brian! what a great story- and i love that you're matching in stripes! :D

Mary said...

Thank you!! I love it!