Engage(d)!

Not to bury the lead: Kelly and I are now engaged! I asked her to marry me today and she said yes. Now, let me go back and tell the story.

I didn’t sleep much last night. Having gone to bed at 8 PM, I slept until 9 PM and then, it seemed, I was up every 15 minutes until we both finally got up at 7 AM this morning. It was one of the longest nights of my life. Part of the reason was that I was really sore, my muscles were aching and twitching, and that was because I started up on strength training again. I couldn’t find a comfortable position and kept tossing and turning all night. Part of it was that I was anxious about today’s event. Originally, it was my plan to propose to Kelly after the formal dinner tonight, but I quickly decided I wouldn’t be able to wait that long.

We had gone ring-shopping several weeks ago. I wanted to make sure I knew what she would like, so we looked at several places, until I got a good idea of what type of ring she liked. I then went out by myself a few weeks ago and got a ring, had it sized and it had been burning a hole in my soul ever since. It was very hard to wait for this weekend, let alone dinner tonight.

We hit the road at about 8:15 AM. The weather was perfect and the drive out to The Homestead was a nice one. It took us about 3-1/2 hours to get there. Some of the scenery going through the mountains and forests was really spectacular. We arrived at the Homestead just after noon. What a place! It’s in the middle of nowhere, in Hot Spring, Virginia, but there it is ! We checked in, had lunch–in which I tried fried green tomatoes for the first time–and then finally went up to our room. Our room was on the top floor of the tower. It was a large room with a views to the south and east. We changed clothes and I suggested we walk around the grounds.

We walked around, and found a trail, the Deerlick trail, which headed up into the hills. We followed the trail up to a spot that overlooked the resort, at the edge of a green on the golf course. I suggested we take some pictures there, and we did. Looking at the green, I then suggested that I mount the camera on the green and get a timed pictured of both of us, with the resort in the background. I mounted the camera but instead of putting it on the timer, I put on the video. I told Kelly it was on a minute timer. We posed and after about 20 seconds or so, I said, “Oh, I almost forgot…” I pulled out the ring, got down on one knee, and said, “Will you marry me?”

She said yes.

The ring fit perfectly and she loved it. When we looked at the video, it captured the moment, but after I proposed, the camera fell backward (as though fainting from the romance of the moment) so that all you can see is sky (although you can still hear us).

I was elated for the rest of the day. We called our families to share the news. I’d already told my family what I was planning, and I’d called Kelly’s parents earlier in the week to tell them and to get their permission. (This, some people have said, is rather old-fashioned of me.) Meanwhile, we toured more of the resort until it was time to get ready for the formal dinner.

Dressed in suit and tie (and Kelly in her elegant black dress), we headed to dinner at 7 PM and were seated at once. Dinner was excellent. We shared a small bottle of red wine. For an appetizer, I had BBQ shrimp and Kelly had Ahi tuna. For the main course, I had rack of lamb, which was very good. Kelly had a pasta dish. In between they brought us a sorbet, which was good because the shrimp was spicy and the sorbet took the edge off. For dessert, we both had the chocolate mousse. We lingered over our meal and didn’t finish until almost 9 PM.

After dinner, we wandered out to one of the greens where they were showing a movie outdoors. It was Night in the Museum and we watched it in mild amusement before deciding to call it a night.

It was a wonderful day, however, and I feel incredibly lucky.