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Hunkaroonie's parents greeted us at the farm upon our arrival that night (his grandparents out of town). We sat around the kitchen table catching up until our eyes became heavy and yawns contagious.
We woke up bright & early the next morning.
September 4, 2004
Hunkaroonie and his dad had a long list of things they needed to get done at the farm. Typical. So his mom and I headed into town and did some shopping and went to lunch.
That evening we enjoyed dinner together at the house and planned to go for a hike that evening before it got dark. The boys decided they would head out first. His mom and I cleaned up dinner and got our hiking shoes on. She told me I needed to bring a sweatshirt because the temperature was dropping and she didn't want me to get cold. She insisted and sent me back upstairs.
Once we finally arrived at the land, sweatshirt in tow, I asked her why there was a fire up on the hill. I kept saying, "do you see that?" "Who is up there?" "Don't you think that is weird?" "We should call the boys and tell them." His mom didn't say much and just drove further across the pasture toward that fiery light. We arrived at the foot of the hill, to see his dad standing next to a burning tiki torch holding a note. I was still oblivious and asked where Hunkaroonie was. His dad replied, "he wanted me to give you this."
This was the note (written on a torn off grocery bag). I cherish this note. It hangs in our bedroom on the wall.
The sun was just setting. I started the uphill climb. I turn and look back, his parents were driving away. I took a deep breath. Covered my face with my hands and tears started to fall. I couldn't believe it. Hunkaroonie was at the top of the hill waiting for me. To ask me to be his wife. For him to be my husband. I dreamed of this day. This moment. But looking around, this was far greater than any dream I've ever had.
That day Hunkaroonie (and his dad) cleared a pathway through the tall brush from the bottom of the hill to the top. They lined the pathway with tiki torches to light the way. And laid a path of two dozen long stem roses. It was beautiful. Breathtaking. It was peaceful. Not a single soul in the miles you could see. After gathering every.single.rose he carefully placed on the ground, I slowly made my way up the hill. So much was running through my mind in those 3-5 minutes. I was nervous. Overjoyed. I was trying to take it all in. Taking a mental snapshot. I didn't want to forget any small detail. Because this. This is what love looked like.
I finally reached the top. With two dozen roses in hand I turned the corner and saw Hunkaroonie on one knee. With the most beautiful background behind him. He was kneeling in the opening between the trees. A bonfire (hence the fire I saw when I first arrived with his mom that I was so worried about) was warming the air. Music softly playing in the background. Chilled champagne & strawberries. A tent set up. No single detail spared. (He even had my cell phone so I could call Rita & MamaSis. Who were anxiously awaiting the call.)
Quite honestly I just saw him. On one knee. With a box.
I will spare you the specific and personal things he said to me but between tears and hugs he asked me to marry him. I said yes.
We left the farm that weekend different than we came. Forever changed. Engaged. We drove back to the city lights with a promise to one another. A new title. A diamond on my left hand. And grins that stretched from ear to ear. We closed the door to our tiny little apartment that night knowing we'd come a long way since those cafeteria eating, morgan drinking, eyelash batting days. And we were pretty proud of that.
The journey (as boyfriend/girlfriend) and the (surprise) engagement were both more than I could have dreamed of and, at times, more than I think I deserve.
Nonetheless, this is my story. My love story.