How We Met: Derrek and I are both accountants and we met while working at an accounting firm. We never actually worked on the same client together, but our relationship developed while playing on the firm’s co-ed “noncompetitive” football team. About 3 years before we started dating, our first encounter was quite hilarious looking back on it now. I am an avid New York Jets fan and Derrek, being from Rhode Island, loves the New England Patriots. The day I had first met Derrek was in 2007 and it was the week after Bill Belichick, coach of the Patriots, was caught ‘cheating’ by videotaping the defensive signals of the Jet’s coaches. A co-worker, knowing that I am a Jets fan, pointed Derrek out from across the room, letting me know he was a Patriots fan. I walked right up to him and asked “How does it feel to root for a team that cheats?” ….and the rest is history.
The Proposal: Shannon, my friend and former roommate, contacted me a couple of weeks before the actual proposal asking if I wanted to take her to a hot yoga on Saturday 6/29/13. I love hot yoga and was excited that she finally wanted to go to a class with me. We had planned to leave my house at 7:30 in the morning for an 8 o’clock yoga class. Well as my luck has it, Saturday morning I woke up not feeling well so I messaged her that I wasn’t going to go to the class. Shannon was adamant about going but once she realized I wasn’t changing my mind, asked if we could go out for coffee instead (obviously her job was to get me out of the house, but I had no idea). We walked to a local coffee shop where we sat and talked for about an hour.
On the walk back, I called my parents because they were coming down from New York to Baltimore for my brother’s birthday to “go to the Orioles game on Saturday night” but I hadn’t heard from any of them that they had left NY. Literally NO ONE picked up their cell phones, which I thought was odd but it also wouldn’t surprise me if everyone had their cell phones on silent.
When I got back to the house, I closed the front door and saw these two large yellow post it notes.
Naturally, I thought Derrek went on a run and that he wanted to delay our Costco trip to 10am instead of going when it opened up at 9:30am and that he was telling me I sucked because it was ridiculously humid out and I didn’t want to go running with him. Not thinking anything was going on, I went upstairs to the bedroom and see that there are two more post it notes.
Of course the first thing I do is call him. He doesn’t answer but messages me to looks at Coopers, our golden doodle together, collar. Around Cooper’s neck there is a note there telling me to look under Cooper’s bed. Under his bed was a purple scrapbook and the first page of the scrapbook had instructions.
I was going on a scavenger hunt to find the missing pages of the book! At this point I started to realize what was happening but I was still was in the dark about what exactly was going on.
I had to wait until 10:45am to leave the house and my first stop was the bar No Idea where we go to watch Liverpool soccer games. I was told to look for the “You’ll Never Walk Alone” sign for my next clue.
I walked to the bar, get inside and I am looking around like an idiot for this sign. Luckily one of the bartenders who know us pointed me to a back part of the bar where Derrek’s parents, who are from Rhode Island were waiting.
I immediately broke into tears realizing how much time and energy he put into this adventure I was on. They gave me my next clue which lead me back to our house. At the house I video chatted with his brother in Alaska and he gave me the next clue. This clue lead me to the bar Porter’s, which is where we go a lot when we aren’t at No Idea.
Waiting at Porter’s was my twin sister, Nicole and Shannon. By this point I’m so thirsty because I had walked from one side of town to the other so I stayed with them for a bit, had some water (and maybe a shot or two).
Then I was off to the next location, the top of Federal Hill. Derrek and I take Cooper on walks to Federal Hill and it’s the perfect spot to see all of Baltimore. At the top my parents were waiting for me.
The next clue lead me to the Inner Harbor walkway near the Rusty Scupper where my younger sister and brother were waiting.
They were the last clue and pointed me in the direction of the Harbor to where Derrek was. I found Derrek sitting on a bench waiting for me. I sat down next to him and gave him a kiss not really knowing what to do or say.
He slipped the last clue of the scrapbook in but suggests we take a walk before I read it. We walk about 100 feet when he tells me I can open the book to reveal the final clue.
When I looked up Derrek was down on one knee with the ring. He never said anything, thinking I would immediately respond to what was written. After an awkward 30 seconds of staring at each other I blurted out “Oh, YES”.
A roar of cheering came from all these strangers who were sitting on the Harbor waiting. They saw him pacing before I got there and he told them he was proposing. One of those strangers actually recorded the whole thing on her iPad and our friend, Alison Knight of Alopics Photography, photographed the whole proposal too.
After the proposal we walked back to a restaurant for brunch where his parents, my family and Shannon were waiting for us to celebrate.
I never would have thought that when I got home from coffee those two post-it notes would be the start of the best day of my life. Not only did the clues in the scrapbook lead me to all of our favorite places in the city we live in, they were woven into stories and pictures that detailed our entire relationship. Including our friends and family made this proposal that much more special. I still cannot believe he was able to keep all of this a secret. To say this was a complete surprise would be an understatement. I am truly blessed to have such a wonderful future husband.