how we met
A couple of months into our freshman year of college, both of our families happened to attend the same wedding reception. It turns out that our parents knew each other from way back, even before any of them immigrated from Bangladesh to the US. As they got to talking, they realized that both their kids were in their freshman year at Rutgers and living on the same campus! They introduced us to each other and my (Nishat’s) mom made me get Raiyan’s phone number, saying that we should be friends and look out for one another at school. At first we didn’t really get in contact with each other after that day, but then we started running into each other around campus. We started grabbing meals together at the dining hall, sharing notes for classes we had in common, and quickly became good friends. After about a year of friendship, things took a bit of a turn :)
how they asked
While I knew the general timeframe of when we would get engaged, the proposal was such a sweet surprise. During the first year of our relationship, the first all-day date we went on was a trip to New York for my birthday. On that day, we rowed a boat together at the lake in Central Park. The day Raiyan proposed to me, he lured me into the city under the guise of grabbing breakfast with some of his friends. Since his friends were “running late” and we were across the street from Central Park, we went on a stroll, admiring spring blooming on the trees. As we were walking past the boathouse, Raiyan persuaded me to go boating for just a little bit. I guess his friends were running pretty late. We rowed out towards the middle of the lake and next thing I know, Raiyan pulls out a ring and asks me to marry him! It was the happiest moment of my life. I couldn’t stop giggling and smiling the whole day. Raiyan: Top 5 most stressful moments of my life. I haven’t rowed a boat since that date years ago. I also felt bad lying to her. But we made it happen and it was so worth it. I’m so glad she loved the idea.