How We Met
I got a message from Dwayne on Instagram 18/04/2017, 3.34pm
“Hiya Lauren, I was chatting to Bernie and she egged me on to have a chat with you… so if you’re keen… be nice to catch up for a chat or coffee? Let me know.”
“If you prefer messaging me on my mobile it is ……….” It wasn’t because I didn’t want to message him that I left him hanging for two hours.. It was more so because I was thinking “WHAT THE HELL WOULD DWAYNE RAMSAY WANT TO CHAT TO ME FOR?!?!?”
I work with Dwayne’s sister in law Bernie and have done for quite a few years now. We’ve always had a good relationship and when I became single she used to always joke with me about how she was telling him to go for me. I had heard of Dwayne and a bit about him but wouldn’t have known him if I fell over him on the street. I also knew he lived in Sydney so never really even gave it a thought.
The day he messaged me I remember being at home with my Aunty and telling her. She had worked in a place where Dwayne had been doing some refurbishing for his dad’s company a few years prior and always thought he was so lovely. After chatting with her about it for a little while and feeling surprisingly nervous I decided to reply..
“Hi Dwayne, a chat sounds nice.. I bet Bernie has been making me sound way better than I am. I just have to let you know, I like coffee but I’d much prefer wine.”
After a few messages and snap chats later Dwayne called and we had a proper conversation. He was in Pirie visiting his Daughter Aster and his family for a few days before he went back to Sydney for work so he told me he’d let me know if the opportunity arose to catch up.
I was heading away on the weekend so Dwayne called me on Wednesday telling me he had an opening on Thursday night for a few hours. I didn’t have any issues with this however I did have a netball trial game that evening so it was going to have to wait until after that.
After the trial game nice and sweaty and disgusting I called Dwayne to see if he was still happy for a catch up which he was. Only I had to pick him up from his parents’ house as he had lost his licence!!
He waited down the end of the driveway and had to direct me on where I was going because of how nervous I was. (I’d never done anything like this before!)
Dwayne got in the car dressed so nicely, smelling amazing with his bottles of wine and I’m sitting there smelling just wonderful (not) all sweaty with dirty hair in my netball training clothes and he still leaned over gave me a kiss on the cheek and told me it was nice to finally meet me properly.
When we got back to my house we sat in the lounge and chatted with our glasses of wine. Dwayne told me he didn’t message me for ages because I wasn’t his type (I had my hair coloured red). I told Dwayne I thought he was pretentious. Aren’t first assumptions a funny thing! After conversing for quite a while Dwayne finally asked “are you ever going to get in the shower?!”. (I thought I better).
Dwayne stayed all night and we chatted about anything and everything, he was so easy to talk to and knowledgeable about so many things. (Well he made it sound like he was anyway). I got up and got ready for work the next morning and dropped Dwayne back off at the end of the driveway.
The next week Dwayne was headed back to Sydney so the first meet with him was the only one. While he was in Sydney we used to keep in contact through Snap Chat, messaging and the occasional phone dates. (I used to look forward to these the most).
We would talk about things that were bothering us, stupid things we had gotten up to on the weekend, what was going on at work and with our families. Through doing this we created a beautiful friendship with each other. There was never any judgement which was lovely. Dwayne made me feel very comfortable.
(He now always jokes about how I thought he was pretentious).
Dwayne finished working in Sydney in July and moved back to Port Pirie to work again for the family Business. I gave Dwayne space and didn’t put pressure on him to catch up as I knew it was going to be a huge adjustment for him. He had lived away in various states for 5 years with not a lot of responsibility so I knew coming back home and working/ living with his family again was going to take a bit of getting used to.
Four weeks after Dwayne had moved back to Pirie I went to the pub one Friday night to celebrate playing our last netball game for the season with my team. Once again, I’m sitting there all sweaty with a wine and dirty hair in my netball uniform and one of my girlfriends pointed out Dwayne had just walked in with his mates. I couldn’t believe it, it was the first night he’d been out since he got home and there I was in pretty much the same state I was the first time I’d met him. Initially I was so shocked he was there and embarrassed this was the second time he’d seen me like this I wanted to go home. When I got over myself Dwayne came over with his friends as we all know each other, again with big hugs and happy hellos for everyone.
Dwayne and I spent that night catching up with each other and our friends. From then we kept in contact on a regular basis (having dinner, wine, spending time together, meeting each other’s families etc. and on the 7th of September Dwayne asked me to be his girlfriend.
how they asked
Dwayne and I started planning our first proper holiday together in march 2018. We were going to Western Australia to catch up with friends he had made while working there and visit the beautiful places we knew about and ones we hadn’t yet discovered.
We were going to organize a wine tour on one of the days we headed down south so we could both enjoy the wine tasting without having to worry about who was responsible for driving. (This was always Dwayne as he was the nominated driver for the car we hired. Lucky me!)
I ended up letting/making Dwayne organize the whole holiday pretty much under the one condition that we went to see the Quokkas at Rottnest Island! This was one thing I didn’t really want to miss out on. Dwayne had lived in Western Australia for a year and a half previously so I trusted that he would work everything out perfectly. This and the fact that everything he plans there is no stone left unturned.
I jokingly said to Dwayne one of the nights we were having a discussion about our holiday all I want to make sure I do is try and get my makeup done on the main days that we’re doing things so I can feel nice all day. Next thing I know he’s booked me in to get my makeup done for the Wednesday we had organised our wine tour. He didn’t keep this a surprise and when I told people he had done this they were saying “well didn’t you have your suspicions then?!?” The truth is this is the sort of person Dwayne is. I say something in passing or just as an idea and he’s already booked it. So no, there were never any suspicions. He is the most thoughtful and caring person I’ve ever come across and this is just the sort of thing he does.
On the Wednesday of our wine tour Dwayne dropped me off to a beauty salon in Dunsborough to get my makeup done while he went back to the motel we had stayed the night before to pack up our things. When I messaged him to let him know I was ready he picked me up and drove me to the place we were staying that night. ‘The Empire Retreat’.
When we took our bags into the reception our room wasn’t ready but the lady told us she was happy to put our things in our room for us when it was. She also said I’m going to put you in room 10, not 8. I like 10 better. This made me excited because I had no idea where we were or what the rooms were like at all but I knew it was going to be amazing!
We then went out to the car park to wait for our driver for the day. The only thing I knew was his name was Cam. I was very excited to find out what we were going to be getting around in.
Dwayne and I were standing there chatting for a couple of minutes when right on schedule Cam pulls up in his 1969 retro blue Kombi. After admiring the car for a bit and then putting our things in the back we were on the way to our first winery. Windance. AH MAZING!
Service, wine, location. Everything about this place was beautiful.
Next stop, Will’s Domain. Another beautiful winery with amazing views and apparently the food is fabulous when the kitchen is open too!
The third winery we went to was Amelia Park. Dwayne loved this one especially because there was wood EVERYWHERE. He’s a carpenter by trade so this place was right up his alley. We were also booked into the restaurant here for lunch once we had finished our wine tasting. Once we had finished with the wine we made our way over. By this time I was more than happy to sit down with some food and chat about our day and holiday so far. The food was fantastic, I didn’t want my meal to end. Unfortunately, it did and we were on somewhat of a time schedule so after some photos out the front of the winery with the view (and the Kombi) we made our way to the next stop.
House of Cards.
Now this winery has a cellar door, a restaurant AND a chocolate factory! By this time I was incredibly full though so wasn’t too into the chocolate side of it. We did our wine tastings and made our purchases here and then it was off to the fifth and final winery of the day.
This place was something else. The wine, the views, even the homeware store they have attached to it was amazing. I remember walking outside with Dwayne when we first got here and saying ‘now this would be an amazing place to get married!’
It’s hilly, there’s wine, the view from outside the cellar door looked over the vineyards and you could see kangaroos in the bottom of them. It was perfect.
We went back inside as the lady behind the counter was finishing up with her customers. When she welcomed us over I dragged a stool with me because by this time my feet were killing me. We chatted a while during the wine tasting and when we got to the end the lady said ‘this is all I have for your wine tasting today but I do have some museum wine downstairs. You two look like you’d like to try that’. We both agreed after I proceeded to ask “what the hell is museum wine?” The response.. “Just.. Really old wine…”
That was good enough for me.
We went behind the counter and down the stairs, every second or third step was lit with candles. It was magical. When we got to the bottom there was a beautiful set up with rugs, cushions, a lounge, and flowers everywhere. It was just amazing. We were told to get comfortable while the lady opened this massive door that overlooked the whole winery. She told us she’d be back in a few minutes with the wine.
Dwayne and I chatted for a few minutes before he proceeded to tell me he had something he wanted me to read. It was a letter of some sort and just as I was about to start he said “no, you need to stand up”. (I get butterflies now just thinking about it).
I started reading the letter when Dwayne then said “No, you have to read it to me out loud.”
I started reading the letter again this time out loud. It was beautiful, all about how Dwayne and I had met and became friends while he lived away, it made me laugh and cry, and it was so honest and true. I got to the very end and remember saying “DO I HAVE TO READ THAT?!” The end of the letter said;
Will you marry me?
At this stage Dwayne was down on one knee with a ring in his hands and I was completely oblivious because of the paper in my hand and what I was reading.
By this time he pushed the paper aside and proceeded to talk (I can’t really remember what he said it was all a bit of a blur because I was in so much shock and completely mesmerized by the shine of the ring he had in his hands.) I said yes and we hugged and kissed and then a flash started going off (yes he had organized a photographer as well!)
After we had calmed down we kind of went through the motions of what had just happened all over again. I asked Dwayne how he knew I’d say yes. Apparently mum told him he was all good with that one. Dwayne was so excited for me to call my parents that was what I had to do next. Mum and Dad were so
happy they didn’t have to keep it a secret any longer as he had asked them both prior to this if he could have their daughters hand in marriage like the true gentleman he is.