How We Met
Michael & I met back in 2013 at Coachella Music Festival. I know what you’re thinking… oh cute, some mutual friends introduced them and the rest is history. But that’s actually not what happened.
I was standing in the middle of a crowd full of thousands of people under the Sahara Tent, a large, hangar-like tent named after the Sahara Desert. One of my best friends, Heather, was standing by my side. We were dancing and grooving to one of our favorite artists, Moby.
For whatever reason, I glanced over to my right and I caught eyes with a guy who was standing about ten feet away from me. He smiled at me and as silly as it sounds, my heart skipped a beat. I turned to my friend Heather and yelled over the music, “I just locked eyes with the cutest boy I’ve ever seen in my entire life!” She then glanced over to the right to see who I was talking about and quickly replied “Well, he keeps smiling at you. Maybe you should go say hi.” (Heather would later admit that she was joking and didn’t actually think that I was going to maneuver my way past ten people to yell “hi!” into a strangers ear. But I did just that.
I shuffled my way past the sweaty crowd until I was standing right in front of him. By the time I reached him, he was turned around, talking to his buddies. I immediately felt so awkward and my cheeks began to turn red, but I knew that it was too late to turn back around. I tapped him on the shoulder to get his attention, and when he turned around, my face was practically squished up against his chest.
He looked down at me and smiled, and I felt that same feeling that I had just felt minutes before, the skipping of my heart. Without even thinking, I blurted out the words “Hi! I think you’re really cute.” He gave me that heart warming smile once more before yelling over the music, “I think you’re really cute too.”
To this day, we laugh at the fact that I made the first move ;)
We danced to the rest of the set together and then exchanged numbers after the show. We would text one another throughout the festival so that we could meet up at various sets. We couldn’t get enough of one another.
At the end of the festival, we said our goodbyes, but I couldn’t stop thinking about him. I was overwhelmed by a feeling that I had never felt before.
Then, the following weekend, I received a phone call from him. He informed me that he was coming to Santa Monica that weekend (where I lived at the time) to visit a few friends and that he would love to see me. My heart felt like it was going to burst out of my chest. I couldn’t believe I was going to be able to see him again.
At the time, Michael was living in Newport Beach and I was living in Santa Monica. I was new to LA and I had no idea that Newport Beach was only about an hour south from where I lived and honestly, I had no idea that seeing him post-Coachella, was even an option.
Needless to say, we met back up at a restaurant in Santa Monica that weekend and the chemistry was still stronger than ever.
Six and a half years later and we’re still going strong..
How They Asked
Michael and I share a love for camping, hiking and the great outdoors. It’s a huge part of our relationship and it’s kind of what makes us… well, us. So for Michael’s 30th Birthday, I planned a hiking trip in Utah for the two of us.
Our first stop was Bryce Canyon, National Park. Next up on the itinerary was Zion National Park, which is where we spent the majority of our trip. We arrived in Zion on Friday afternoon and we were completely wiped from having hiked for hours throughout Bryce earlier that morning.
We knew we had a big day ahead of us the next day. The plan was to wake up at 6 am to be some of the first hikers on the 7 am shuttle into the park, which would then drop us off at the trailhead to Angels Landing, one of the world’s most renowned hikes.
I forgot to mention that Michael is deathly afraid of heights, and for those of you who are unfamiliar with Angels Landing, it is a 1,488-foot tall rock formation with and elevation of 5,790′. The distance of the hike is about 5.4 miles round trip and includes an elevation gain of 1500 feet. There are sections of the hike that are very narrow with 1000-foot drop offs on either side… not an ideal situation for someone who has a fear of heights.
Needless to say, leading up to the hike, Michael was extremely nervous. He asked me about 100 different questions relating to the hike (as I had already hiked it once before in recent years). I assumed that his fear of heights was getting the best of him and even offered that we hike a different trail that wasn’t so daunting. But he was very adamant about hiking Angels Landing. Apparently, he wanted to see what all of the fuss was about…
We awoke early the next morning and hopped on the first shuttle into the park. We were amongst the first group of hikers on the trail and we made great timing, rarely stopping to take breaks along the way. Once we made it to the summit, I turned to Michael and asked if he wanted to take a picture with me, since we had finally made it to the top and I was so proud of him for conquering his fears.
Michael politely declined after having taken a look around, concluding that it was a bit too crowded at the summit for his liking. I figured once again that his fear of heights might be getting the best of him so I shrugged off his nervousness and his polite refusal to take a photo with me.
We began hiking back down and stopped at a lookout point not far from the summit before he exclaimed, “Let’s take a photo here! This is the perfect spot.”
I had to agree, this lookout point was much less crowded and did offer the most beautiful views. I took my spot at the edge of the lookout point, ready for our photo. Michael handed his phone to a random hiker who was passing by and asked if she would mind taking our picture. He then proceeded to reach into his backpack and grab out a ring box. As he walked towards me, it felt as if time stood still.
Michael proceeded to get down on one knee before posing the question – “What if I told you that this hike wasn’t the only thing that I was nervous about doing today?” I was SHOCKED! He then proceeded to ask “Cori, Will you Marry Me?”
I shrieked with excitement and eagerly shook my head yes. Michael slid the ring on my ringer before standing up to scoop me into a big bear hug. As we embraced, kissing and smiling and giggling at one another, we were interrupted by the sounds of clapping and cheering. We turned our heads to the left and realized that a crowd of about 15-20 people had gathered around to watch this special moment. It was the best moment of my entire life.
Most couples probably would have finished the hike before heading into town to pop a bottle of champagne but Michael and I figured what better way to celebrate than to embark on another adventure together?
We grabbed a couple of sandwiches before heading straight to The Narrows, the section of the Virgin River just upstream from the Temple of Sinawava, one of the most legendary canyons to hike in all of Zion National Park.
It was our perfect day. And if ever asked, I wouldn’t change a thing <3