How we met: Simón’s version: I was anticipating another Friday night with my motley collection of punk friends. We had taken to poker as the ritual that got us all in one room, talking and laughing late into the night.
My friend Robby served as host. He called to let me know we were on and that his college classmate Samantha would be joining us. I didn’t think anything of it.
When I walked in Friday night I saw Samantha and realized she was beautiful, stylish and vaguely mysterious. I was fascinated. I sat down next to her and we chatted about things both absurd and sincere. She was incredibly smart and interesting.
When it was time to leave I came so close to asking for her number but I had already walked out the door. I figured I’d have to see her again some other way. Robby called the next day and revealed he was trying to set us up. He could tell I liked her so he gave me her number. I called her and we made a date for the next day. We have hardly gone a day apart since.
I’d spent the afternoon hanging out with my newly-made friend Robby–shopping, lunching, studying. As night turned to day, he began to get call after call from friend after friend to confirm some poker game. I was curious and he invited me to come along and hang out with the guys. Just as we were walking to the car he turned to me with a look of surprise and said, “I can’t believe I hadn’t thought of it before!” I laughed and asked him what he hadn’t thought of. He responded simply and prophetically, “Simón! Of course! You and Simón! You’re going to fall in love!” I dismissed this out of hand and we continued on our way. Perhaps an hour later, a tall, strikingly handsome man in Levi’s and a varsity jacket ducked through the doorway and stepped into the room. As he introduced himself to me and found his seat next to mine I was immediately taken with him. As sure as I was in that moment that he was the most attractive man I’d ever met, I was equally he was utterly out of my league. We hit it off right away and when he called me twelve hours later to ask me out I literally jumped for joy. We’ve been inseparable ever since.
How we asked:
One thing that drew us together was how strongly we both care about many issues of equality. It only made sense that we approached our relationship as equal partners. We talked about asking each other and decided it was perfect for us. We still wanted the fun and anticipation of a surprise so we decided we’d each arrange something special. Simón is a musician and works with audio so he (very nervously!) recorded himself singing and playing two of our favorite love songs in a recording booth after work. He sang them beautifully and earnestly and they were nothing if not sincere.
A friend of ours works at a beautiful hotel near our apartment. When she showed us the Renaissance Hotel ballroom we knew it would be perfect. We booked a room and made the arrangements. We chose rings and wardrobe and drafted our speeches.
The night before the proposals was spent packing our clothes and making our final arrangements. When the morning finally came we waited for check-in time and headed to the hotel. Our friend and concierge had upgraded us to an incredible suite with a beautiful view. We spent the afternoon grooming and preparing ourselves for how very real and soon it was. We each did some sneaky stuff during those last few hours to make sure it would all be perfect. Samantha had a few mysterious texts and phone calls while Simón double checked that the songs were ready to play off of his phone and hid his giant, inflexible headphones.
The time came and Simón met the photographers in the ballroom. He showed them the space and hid my headphones. Samantha came down and we proposed to each other, nervous, forgetful but overjoyed.
She had one of his favorite local musicians come in and play a few songs, including a favorite, Radiohead’s “True Love Waits,” that he played the first time we saw him. It was beautiful and thoughtful, and it was nice to just listen after being so tongue-tied.
We walked a few blocks to a restaurant where we’d gathered our families at a long table under the guise of a Thanksgiving weekend meal since everyone was in town.
There had been lots of hand-wringing over the custom menu and making sure everyone would attend without giving away the surprise but everyone was ready. We walked in, held up our left hands and watched the reactions.
It was a true surprise to everyone there. Her mother’s face was priceless. It couldn’t have gone any better.
Photos by Carly Short Photography