Sunday, November 7, 2010

And so the journey begins

On the 26th of September, after an all-nighter by me to get an essay in on time, and a mid-term test , the other half and I departed Dunedin at around 10:30 at night for an escape.
He hadn't had more than one or maybe two days off in such a long time that he didn't remember when it could have been.
I was so over uni that I was happy for the break.

Destination: Queenstown.

We arrived in Queenstown at around 1am, his parents were still up (doing a puzzle I think) but were on their way to bed, so we bade them goodnight and headed for the spa to begin the wind-down process, then headed for bed. I think he ended up sleeping diagonally on the fold-out sofa. It didn't bother me, I had a comfy single bed in the room I was sharing with his Oma.

Wednesday we both slept in quite late, and then everyone (his mum, dad, oma, 16 year old brother, 5 year old brother, him and I) piled into the van and made tracks to Frankton supermarket.
You see, his family has a tradition that each year, they do this dinner. Each person is given an element of the meal that they have to organise, buy and cook. You have a set budget, and could end up with some wacky combinations, because no-one knows what the other people are planning. The 16 year old brother and I were both on meat, so we had a combined $14 budget, and decided to find something different each.
Dinner turned out amazing, with everyone pitching in and doing their part to make it a lot of fun and a delicious meal.

Thursday (I had been told) I was being taken out for dinner, so I'd had to bring something nice to wear. Somewhere along the line I'd managed to leave one of my minor bags in Dunedin though!!!
Unfortunately this was the bag that contained my contact lenses, my eyeshadow, my necklace and the little fabric flowers I'd planned to wear in my hair, along with my toiletries bag. Thankfully the trip to the supermarket mostly saved me, because we were first at The Warehouse (which meant I could replace my necklace), and then New World meant I could replace my essential toiletries, like my toothbrush!
Anyway... Thursday meant we (my amazing at-that-stage boyfriend, myself, and his 16 yr old brother who I get on alright with) were going ice skating. For those of you who know me, you know that I love ice skating. I took my own ice skates to Queenstown specifically for this reason. I discovered that my other half could in fact skate, although there is no photographic evidence as I'd forgotten to take my camera to the rink.

We had made plans to get home in time for me to get ready to go out for dinner. I didn't have to spend an hour trying to decide how to do my hair and make up, because one of my flatmates had helped my sort out my hair the previous week, and I don't wear a huge amount of make-up anyway!

I waited until I was sure he was in the living room, and walked through the door.

He turned around and gave me a huge hug, only saying one word... "Wow".
I didn't need to hear him say anything other that that, because I knew from that one word that I'd done it right.

His parents proceeded to take photos like we were going to the formal, but we finally departed the resort for our dinner reservation. (I should mention at this point that I had no idea in the faintest where we might be going. I don't know Queenstown very well, I haven't spent much time there, and he had managed to keep the entire plan a secret).

So we get in his car and are driving through Queenstown making idle conversation. I'm still wondering where on earth we're going, until we turn up a small road which leads to a car park.
The car park was at the base of the gondola.
We stopped, and I turned to him and asked "Are you serious?"
"Yes" was his reply, and he proceeded to get out of the car.

Waiting in line in the gondola terminal, my mind was ticking over.
"Maybe tonight's the night..."
And then
"Actually, I don't care. I'm not putting expectations on tonight, I'm just going to enjoy a lovely evening."

We got to the top of the gondola (which was a beautiful view on the ride up), and signed in at the restaurant. They gave us a blue wireless receiver, which would flash red LEDs and beep and vibrate when they were ready to seat us.
We wandered around the centre, looked through the finalists from a photography competition that was on display, and then sat down by a window. There, over Queenstown, was a beautiful double rainbow appearing. I realised at that moment that there was nowhere in the world I would rather be than exactly where I was at that precise moment: With the man I love.

Suddenly the blue thing started flashing. So we returned to the reception desk and were promptly seated in the most amazing seat in the house. It was in the corner of floor-to-ceiling windows, one side overlooking the entirety of Queenstown, with the hills and valleys on the other side.

Dinner was amazing. The food was exquisite, the company was more than I could ever have asked for, the view was spectacular, and we barely spoke throughout the whole meal. We didn't feel that we had to. It was enough to just be together.

After dinner we weren't quite ready to go back yet. He asked me if I wanted to go out on the viewing deck, and I readily agreed.
We had been out there for a little while, just hugging each other close and watching the view. The was a cool wind biting, but I didn't care.

He turned to me, and said "I want to make this official".

He pulled a box out of his jacket pocket, and promised to be with me always, through whatever life throws at us.

"Will you marry me?"


So that's the story of how I began this amazing journey. Our road will have twists and turns, there will always be corners we can't see around, or obstacles that we stay blind to until we trip over them. But I have the most amazing co-driver anyone in the world could ever ask for. He's more than I could have ever asked for, because never in my wildest dreams did I imagine someone as right for me as he is.

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