It all started with some casual banister leaning in the South of France. Okay, I'll backtrack slightly. As you know... the boy popped the question last month and I popped back a yes plus some tears ad giggles. As promised, I'm sharing 'the story' as everyone loves to know how the guy does it... private or with an audience? Intimate or an elaborate declaration of love? Down on one knee or not?
Two days previously to the banister lean, the boy and I were clinking champagne glasses in Wales, at my family home. I had just turned twenty-six, and as we do for each others birthday each year, the boy was taking me away for the weekend. The destination was a surprise, which is customary for our trips away - it's normally a competition to see who can keep the secret the longest. He wins ordinarily. What he had divulged on this occasion, was that I was to pack my passport. Excellent news.
A 5am departure the next day was somewhat unexpected but fuelled by happy anticipation nonetheless. After much nagging on a three-hour car journey, the boy revealed that he was taking me to the French Riviera, Nice. This had been on my bucket list for a long time, though I hadn't realised I'd shared that with him. Nice to know he listens, excuse the pun.
Our first night was incredible... but more on that in the next post. Let's crack on with the story!
That morning, the boy had told me to have a lie in whilst he went off to rent a scooter and then return with the goods. Such a good egg. I'm no good at lying in, especially once I've woken up so I got ready leisurely. When he returned he made me breakfast, and then set to planning a scooter route on our map. Crack on I thought, I had my strawberries and grapefruit to gobble up.
Now the next set of pictures were taken on the back of a scooter in motion, so my thumb will make an appearance or two. I still think it's impressive I managed a scooter selfie.
Along the way, we stopped at some sights whilst saturating the French sun. Lunch called for Monte Carlo, naturally.
En route back home, the boy said he wanted to take me to a garden he'd heard about. I'm a real sucker for gardens - English, tropical, botanical. I find them quite relaxing and heart-warming... a dollup of escapism. This one did not disappoint. In fact, it was the loveliest garden I'd visited. Sorry Nan.
After a good old exploration, we followed a secluded pathway to a rose garden.
It was beautiful. The boy suggested we take a seat for a little while, and I oblidged.
Whilst looking over the pink roses, serene ocean and rolling hills, the boy started to analyse the map. He placed the larger than life guide on the gravelled floor and asked me to connect the dots... all the places we had visited that day. I hadn't realised previously but he'd numbered each destination. With reluctance and confusion I carried out the seemingly irrelevant task, until the penny dropped. On one side of the map spelt 'MARRY' & on the other side spelt 'ME'. With that realisation, he got down on one knee and asked me to marry him.
I've said it before but marriage has never been a goal of mine and not something that strikes an emotional chord, but I wept like an infant. It was singularly the most moving moment I had ever encountered. Sorry, getting a bit full-on here. I cried, I laughed, I got shy, and then it was time to call the family!
After the phone calls and more tears & giggles, we celebrated with a glass of champagne in the tea garden. Turns out the boy had a bottle of champers in the scooter compartment the entire day, and so he drove us to a pebbled beach where we watched the sun go down with plastic cups and warm champagne.
And they lived happily ever after... Or at least until the wedding!