I've started this post so many times but keep getting distracted by phone calls and telling live people about this story. But I think I might have only told a few people all the details of the story. Some know parts, and some know other parts, but only a few know from start to finish, so here is the start to finish of how we got engaged last weekend (6/7/08 as it turned out - a nice way to remember the day).
At the end of May Dave had suggested that we take a weekend getaway trip up north to Duluth to see Lake Superior, which is something we have wanted to do for over a year and had just never done. He said that he would check out hotel options/dates/prices, etc for the weekend of the 20th. But when he started looking into options everything was booked for that weekend, or else rooms were just very expensive! So he looked at the weekend after and it was the same thing. There must be something going on in Duluth, cause everything was booked. So then I suggested that we do it the weekend of the 6th and he was completely ok with that idea. In my mind I thought there might be a chance he might be proposing, but to have bumped up his plans by 2 weeks, and not to be sweating it at all?!? So then I thought maybe he's not, because he wasn't nervous and didn't mind the idea of moving it up, so he must really not be. I checked on priceline and we got a good deal on a room and then the trip was set, cause there's no getting out of priceline :)
We got to Duluth Fri evening, checked in, had dinner and drove around the town to see some sites. And it was a pretty area; we drove over the road of the aerial lift bridge and saw the beach, took pics, etc. We had plans to take a boat ride on Sat at 1:30, but we had also talked about driving up the coast of Lake Superior and wanted to do that earlier, so we called and changed our time to the 11:30 ride so we could get an earlier start. The boat ride was really cool. We got to ride through the harbor, see a lot of the town from the water front view and I took a lot of pictures of the area from the boat. It was really nice. Windy, but nice. Then after that we headed up the scenic route of Hwy 61 up to Two Harbors and saw a lighthouse there. There was a small pier that you could walk out to, but we decided not to stay and do that, because we wanted to head up to Gooseberry Falls State Park and see the waterfalls. That was really nice, it was pretty and we were able to take the trail to the middle falls, which were just awesome. We were so close to the water falling that we could have reached out and tough it. I wish I had cause it was really amazing.
At one point while we were at the falls, Dave kind of knelt down to tie his shoes and I thought how cool it would be if he pulled out a ring. But he didn't. And at one point I even put my hand in his shorts pocket and he didn't try to stop me, and I didn't feel anything ring like and he didn't seem nervous, so again, I thought there really wasn't a chance. We stayed around Gooseberry Falls for a little while, took a lot of pictures, hiked up a little higher, took more pics, and then decided we wanted to really push and head up to Canada, because we wanted to get a stamp in our passports. We've had passports for 2 years and had yet to use them. But now we have! Over the course of stopping to see the lighthouse, falls, and then the 2nd town we stopped in, Grand Marais, to see the light house and eat a little dinner, it was getting to be about late in the afternoon but we really wanted to keep going.
By the time we reached the border it was probably about 7 or so, and we waited in line for a bit, and then when it was finally our turn, I asked the guard if he could stamp our passport. He looked at me like really? but then he did have them stamped. He had asked us where we were going and how long we'd be there. I told him that we really just wanted to be there long enough to get our stamps, turn around and head out. Then Dave asked if he had any suggestions to where we should go and the guy said there wasn't anything until Thunder Bay, which would be about 40 miles away. We knew that but I really figured there would have to be something between there and Thunder Bay, so we drove on in. But there really wasn't anything in between. There were no gas stations, small towns, or anything but farmland and houses between the border and Thunder Bay. By the time we got to the outskirts of the town, it had been another 45 minutes or so and I was getting concerned about how long it would take to get back to Duluth, cause we were going to have to turn around and drive it all the way back. So we stopped at the first gas station we came to, used the rest room, and then I started telling Dave my concerns about driving back. I set the navigation up to get back and it was saying 180 miles. Dave asked me if I was really sure I wanted to turn around without seeing Thunder Bay, and although I wanted to, I didn't want to get home super late, because we had had a pretty busy day. So I told him that I thought we should turn around and he said ok. Little did I know that he had put the ring in his pocket back in Grand Marais and was planning on asking me in Canada when we stopped in Thunder Bay.
We headed home around 8 and got our passports stamped again on the US Border, but it took a little justifying as to why we wanted it. I guess there's not a big demand for passports around the Canadian border on that little highway. So during the drive home I kept thinking that if he was going to do it he would have done it in one of the pretty areas we had been, like the waterfalls, or the lighthouse, or somewhere beachy. But what I didn't know was that I had thwarted his plan now more than once. We got back to the hotel around 11:30 or so. I headed up to the room and Dave went to get some stuff from the front desk. I was in our room, got some ice, turned off the a/c and was pouring us some diet pepsis we had brought up with us. I was pouring the second one when I heard Dave come in.
He was behind me and I said something about how cold the room was (it was 60 degrees in the room with the a/c on full blast, thanks housekeeping I'm freezing!) and he says something like, but you turned it off, right? And I said yes, and he was like, alright then. So then I turn around with the soda in one hand and he's down on one knee, holding the ring box open and I'm just looking at him like what is happening? And he says, "Sarah, I love you. Will you marry me?" Those were his exact words. And I was literally looking at him trying to comprehend what was happening. He had this big smile on his face and kind of a little gleam in his eye because he knew I was so surprised. I had had to put the drink back down, and started to go for the ring, but then told him to put it on me and then I said yes as he was doing that. I had kind of forgotten to actually say yes, but I did finally say it. And I had started to cry a little bit but then when I saw the ring on my finger I just couldn't stop crying. And he got up and hugged me and I was just crying.
He asked me if I knew and I said no, but that I really wanted it to happen this weekend. He kind of led me over to the bed after we hugged and I just couldn't stop looking at it. Then all the questions poured out, like how long had he had it, where had it been in our house, where had it been on this trip (I had packed us and had never seen it!) when did he have it on him? All these questions! Then he told me he had actually gotten it when he went to his parents in CT in May. I couldn't believe it! I was actually supposed to go on that trip with him, but I got cheap and didn't want to pay the crazy ticket prices for 2 plane tickets. So I didn't go. But as it turns out the plan was to go into NY and he was going to propose there. So that was thwart #1. Thwart #2 was that he wanted to ask me in Canada, and I didn't give him the chance. Possible thwart #1.5 was at Two Harbors lighthouse, he had asked me if I wanted to walk down the pier. That would have been a pretty cool spot to do it, so I think he had considered it there, but here again, I had wanted to keep on going.
He also told me he had actually called my parents earlier in the week and got their permission and blessing. And he called my sister and told her he was going to do it, and of course made them all promise not to say anything, which no one did. My family is tricksie!!!
In the end, the way he proposed was the absolute best way it could have happened. Because I had pretty much decided it wasn't going to happen after all and that we really were just taking a weekend getaway trip. And I was really ok with that. Because I had been the one putting these ideas in my own head. I had tried to be subtle and ask questions I thought would give me some idea, but his answers were not what I thought they would be if he were going to be proposing. So I had come to terms with it not happening, so when it die it was the absolute best way it could have!
I'll start a wedding website sometime soon with a countdown ticker once we have some more info. I'm so excited. The ring is awesome! it's just beautiful and exactly what I wanted.
So yay for us! Yay that we're engaged. I love him so much and it's exciting to be able to share this with everyone. We've had so many people congratulating us and being excited with us, and it makes this a really great time!!!