how we met
I always imagined I would meet the love of my life in a coffee shop or by locking eyes from across the room, but life doesn’t always follow lyrics from a Taylor Swift song. I had been on a dating hiatus after many failed and sometimes terrible dates in NYC. After a few months, I went on tinder to see who may be out there and then I stumbled upon Joe. When I saw his face I literally said “whoa” out loud. We started to chat but I was about to head to Ireland for work so we decided to meet for the first time after I returned.
A couple of weeks later, we met up in Astoria, Queens to have brunch at an amazing Creole restaurant called Sugar Freak. It was almost jarring how comfortable I felt around him right away. We had very similar stories in terms of hardships in our past and it was so refreshing for us to be able to talk to each other about it and actually be understood. Before I met him, I was always self conscious about anything that might be perceived as “baggage” or less than perfect. I could finally just be me. Our brunch date turned into a long walk around Astoria…. 10 hours of walking and talking later, it was very clear that this was different. Tinder… who knew!
how they asked
It happened on the weekend when I was celebrating my 30th birthday. Friends were coming in from out of town and a big party was happening that night at a cocktail bar in Boston. I had wanted to go apple picking during the day so we went to Belkin Family Lookout Farm with a few very close friends to soak up what turned out to be a perfect Autumn day. We were walking through the orchards and the sun was breaking out from behind dark clouds in the sky, making the landscape look very dramatic and colorful. I was taking photos when I heard Joe from behind me say “Hey Rachel, look at this weird apple…”I turned around and there he was on one knee, holding the most beautiful ring in his hands. I stared at him, he stared at me, and I couldn’t wait for him to ask any longer so I just yelled out “YES” before he had a chance!
My best friend had been in on the WHOLE thing and was able to videotape the proposal. After all of the photos and apple picking (though it was hard to focus on the apples at this point), we had some celebratory cider at the Taproom on the farm’s property (yes, they make their own cider and it’s amazing.)On top of everything, when we showed up for the party that night we were able to surprise EVERYONE and it turned into an impromptu engagement party. It couldn’t have been a more perfect day filled with surprises, love, friends…. and of course, cider.