How We Met
We met in no spectacular way, we worked at the same place and hit it off right away. He stopped working there a few months after we became friends and then we started hanging out fairly regularly. We were more than friends for a few years before we were official, though!
how they asked
My name is Eliza and my (now) fiance, Skylar, is a SUPER romantic.
Let’s start with a few small details that better help paint the picture. I work at a small consulting company setting appointments. I work Monday through Thursday 7:30-4:30 with an hour lunch between 11:30-12:30 then 7:30-4 on Fridays where we give up a half hour of lunch to leave a half an hour early. Totally worth it.
April Fools Day this year landed on a Friday so, like every other Friday, I went to work. Skylar, however, had called off for the day (at this point I knew something was up but I had NO IDEA what I was really in store for!). Around 11 or so I got a text from him saying he was in the area and wanted to do lunch. Cute, right? I happily accepted knowing that it meant he would already have lunch waiting for me -stellar on a Friday with the shortened time-frame.
Lunch-time hits, I hurry out to the parking lot and he has subs waiting for us but tells me to get into the car because there’s somewhere he wants to take me. It seemed a bit odd but not enough to really raise any suspicions. Until he gets on 71N. Now, we’re from Cincinnati, OH and where I work, there’s nothing northbound for miles. Well, nothing you can go do on a 30 minute lunch-break, at least. So that’s what I say to him “Where are we going? There’s nothing north of here for miles… you know I only have 30 minutes today, right?” He chuckles and tells me not to worry, he knows what he’s doing. I try to relax but we’re pushing 15 minutes gone, now, we’ve passed the closest exit and I know the next exit isn’t for a few miles still.. we need to turn around or I’m going to be late back to work. As we approach then pass the next exit I start to panic, there’s NO WAY I’m going to make it back to work on time, now.. I don’t know where he thinks he’s taking me but this is not cool. I look at him with distress and frantically say “I’m going to be late from lunch! I don’t know where we’re going but we don’t have time for this!” He starts laughing and now I’m confused. He look at me smiling and says “Baby, did you know you’ve had this afternoon off for the last three months?” and my jaw drops… “You’re lying..” “Nope. Its been set up for a long time, now,” so I did what any sane adult would do and called my boss. You know, I believed him and all, but its my JOB. He wasn’t lying. I had the afternoon off.
Now, this is just the beginning.. because I had no clue at all how elaborate he had planned things.
At this point I’m more curious than anything else so I ask him where we’re going. He tells me its a secret but he’s got clues for me and I’ll get the first one at our first stop. He then hands me a spiral-bound stack of note-cards. I open up the first page and there are (in full color) hand drawn directions -well, direction- its step by step. On the opposite page there are questions… just a bunch of random questions. He tells me its to get to know each other even better and that the step by step directions are just that, directions to where we’re headed… but I’m not allowed to flip ahead. Fair enough.
We keep driving, its been about two hours now, I still haven’t the slightest clue where we’re headed. I’m reading the questions out loud and we’re both taking turns answering. We’re laughing and having a great time (we’ve always enjoyed car trips together) and FINALLY its time for our first stop which means I get the first clue! We gas up and he hands me a manila envelope and I opened it as quickly as I could manage. Inside was a one dollar bill. Now I’m thoroughly confused but even more excited. We get back on the road and I’m asking a million questions related to this mysterious clue… then I get it! We’re headed east and have been for a little while. “Is it Washington D.C.??!!” It is! He had hijacked me from work to take me to Washington D.C.!
The drive is long but awesome, like I’ve said, we’ve always enjoyed car trips with each other. We went through his list of questions and made playlists and just spent time with each other. The first night in D.C. wasn’t glamorous but we were exhausted and went to bed almost immediately after getting to our hotel room.
We start the next day getting passes for the metro which is a fun little adventure. I had only been to D.C. once and it was in high-school so everything was very regimented… fun.. but regimented. So we hop onto the metro and the first place we head is to the National Zoo, we spend a good amount of time there then head out and grab some lunch. He then takes me to the Smithsonian of Air and Space. It is amazing. Once we leave we end up just meandering along the National Mall towards the Washington and Jefferson Monuments. We’re taking our time, though, he has an agenda I can tell -he keeps checking the time. We sit on one of the benches and just relax, its getting close to sun-down. He asks me if I’m ready to go and I say sure, I don’t know where we’re going but he obviously does.
A small history lesson for those that don’t know. Inbetween the Washington and Jefferson monuments in Washington D.C. there is the Tidal Basin which is surrounded by hundreds of Japanese Cherry Blossom trees which were gifted to the United States by Japan. These trees bloom for 1-2 weeks during the Spring then the flowers are gone. They are GORGEOUS when in-bloom and the flowers cover everything in the area for those two-ish weeks.
We go to cross the street to the Tidal Basin and there’s a street performer who, as we pass, begins to play our song (turned out to be completely coincidental, I later found out) and we head to the Cherry Blossoms. I’m drawn to this older, gnarled, Cherry Blossom, its filled with so much character. Oh, I’m a tree-hugger, by the way. So, yeah, I’m drawn to this tree, I walk over to it and I’m running my hand over the rough bark and looking in a knot-hole in it then I turn around to say something to Skylar… and there he is, on one knee, the perfect romantic mess of a man I get to marry! Talk about a story to tell! I (of course) said yes and we had an amazing dinner and rest of our trip. I genuinely lucked out.