Abenee and Hai

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How We Met

You could say Abee and Hai meeting each other was by chance…or by luck.

Early May of 2009 — It was the night of Randolph High School’s Asian Night when Abee and Hai had their first encounter but they only started off as acquaintances. All of their friends gathered at Castle Island late at night to hang out at the playground. They introduced themselves to each other and Hai convinced Abee that he was Thai. “Hi, my name is Hai and I’m Thai.” Naive as Abee was, she believed him at first. What a fool she was.

Abee was a Facebook creep, and requested Hai as a Friend, which he accepted and had no idea what trouble was to come… They kept in touch while he was on vacation with family in Canada for a wedding. They would chat over AIM for hours each day and the more they talked, the more they got to know each other, and from then a special friendship sparked. Hai was always known as a crazy, charming, goofball growing up. According to Hai, Abee was a very shy and “mysterious” exotic girl (Boy, did he like the quiet ones…). He was always up for a challenge and his humor (and buying her food) was the way to her heart.

For the next couple of months, they continued to chat over AIM, talk on the phone for hours, and text pretty much everyday. The night of July 4th at an old friend’s cookout was when things started to spice up. There was a pretend “bonfire” and a circle of friends who sat down just enjoying the 4th of July festivities. Hai happened to be sitting next to Abee and everyone held hands. Hai never forgot how sweaty and clammy Abee’s hands were and he always has said she was so nervous being around him (what bullshit lol). From that night, their friendship began to develop into something else, something special.

On July 30th, 2009 — they officially became boyfriend and girlfriend. Summer 2009 was definitely a memorable one — sleepless nights talking on the phone until they literally had to get up from bed and get ready for work, to late night drives to Wollaston Beach and walking and sharing secrets, to weekly surprise visits by Hai to the VA Outpatient Pharmacy on Causeway Street and dropping off Subway and Quizno’s subs for her lunches…to Hai’s father driving for 2 hours to pick up Hai from UMass Amherst every other weekend so he could see Abee in Boston while she was at school. Those crazy Zoomass parties, MIT parties, house parties all over the city…so many funny and drunken memories that were shared. Abee remembers Hai saying he never planned to even date someone before starting college as a Freshman…and whaddya know, he took a chance with her.

Over the years, their relationship grew stronger. Through stressful college days, late nights of studying, dealing with personal life events, beginning “big kid” careers after college, they were always there and being so supportive for each other. They helped each other grow, encouraged, and motivated one another no matter what life threw at them. On Saturday, April 7, 2018 he asked her to marry him. What an amazing birthday surprise! Who’d knew 9 years ago that they would be where they are now?

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how they asked

The day was April 7, 2018 and it was a cold Saturday morning. It definitely didn’t feel like spring and it felt more like winter. Before I picked up Abee, I had to head into the office to do some work. The engagement ring box was tucked inside my jacket pocket and I remember feeling my pocket every few minutes to make sure it was still there. Afterwards, I went to pick up Abee so we could hang out for the day. She got in the car and she kept talking on and on about something, which honestly I wasn’t paying attention to. I kept replaying in my head how I was going to propose to her and what I was going to say. Abee asked, “So, where are we going?” and I replied, “Let’s go walk around Boston”. We usually like to take strolls in the city or even grab a bite to eat. We parked at Post Office Square and started making our way to the waterfront by the New England Aquarium. The freezing wind was blowing in our faces and I remember Abee’s eyes started watering as it usually does when it’s cold lol. She said, “It’s freezing out” and laughed. For some reason, the cold didn’t bother me since I was so nervous about the proposal.

We were walking closer and closer to the waterfront, as I was nervously planning how and when I was going to pop the question. I kept looking out to the water, and staring at the boats sitting by the docks, amazed at how beautiful the view was. There was a long line of families waiting to enter the aquarium. We walked by them and arrived at the “proposal spot”. It was a spot that I walked to many times to relax before heading to work. There was barely anyone around, only a few tourists, and I was thinking to myself, “Wow. This is perfect.”

Abee outspokenly said, “I really want Boston Chipyard cookies at Faneuil Hall Market Place. Can we go?” I replied, “Sure.” and she said, “OK let’s go. What are we waiting for??” At that moment, I was pacing back and forth while Abee was ready to sprint off for her cookies. I grabbed her by her arms and that’s when I told her, “Let’s chill here for a bit.” She had that look on her face like she knew what was going on and thinking to myself, “SHIT. She knows!!! I have to ask her now!!” We took a few more steps closer to the edge of the waterfront and I grabbed both of Abee’s hands in mine. She started trembling and cramping up like she was wearing a straight jacket in a psych ward…

Abee started crying, sobbing like a big baby, and it was a beautiful ugly cry. I knelt down on one knee and everything I had remembered and prepared to say to her, went straight out the window. Her sobbing was such a big distraction that my mind was clouded and I lost my train of thought. I told Abee how much she meant to me and how I have been wanting to ask her to marry me for awhile, how special she was to me, and how much I really loved her. As she was still sobbing, I asked, “Will you marry me?,” and then there was a long pause while she was gathering herself up so she could speak a word, and thank God she eventually said “Yes.” I made my way to sliding the engagement ring on Abee’s finger and it got stuck halfway! I thought to myself, “Oh no… this better fit.” Luckily, it only got caught on some finger rolls and it was a perfect fit. I stood up and held her in my arms while she was still crying. I asked her, “Are these happy or sad tears?” She replied back, “I’m happy but I don’t like surprises!” I was relieved and wanted to take pictures to cherish this moment.

As a boat was approaching in the background, I immediately got my phone ready and said, “The boat is coming, smile for the camera!!” I captured a few photos of Abee crying and smiling with her ring on. Shortly afterwards, we had a stranger nearby take our photos and then we walked to Faneuil Hall to get Abee’s cookies. Knowing Abee, she always mentioned that she preferred having a private and intimate proposal rather than doing it in a public place full of strangers…and lucky her, it was the most perfect day. She got what she hoped for, and I couldn’t be any happier.

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