Mark proposed to me on October 15th 2004. We were in New Zealand at the time as part of a round the world trip. At the time, we had been together for 6 years and had been through a lot together including a long distance relationship, the transition of being students to co-habiting in London, to travelling literally half way around the world!
When we announced to everyone that we were going travelling everyone sucked in their breath and said ‘are you sure? It’ll make or break you, you know’, which was obviously not really what we wanted to hear, though I could see their point. Travelling could really only go two ways – we would either come back together forever or we would split up.
At first, as we backpacked around Southeast Asia, every time there was a gorgeous sunset and we walked hand in hand along the beach I would think he was going to propose, but he didn’t. By the time we were leaving Australia 8 months later I was thinking that we were obviously strong enough to survive 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 8 months solidly together but perhaps he thought we weren’t ready for marriage or perhaps he just didn’t want to get married. We were getting on well together, we’d been together for long enough and its not as if the opportune moment had never arrived, there were beautiful, stunning, romantic moments on a daily basis that would have been suitable for a proposal, but still nothing materialised.
So we arrived in Auckland, New Zealand, on the 14th October. The day after arriving we went into the city centre to do some shopping. Mark needed to buy a new camera and I wanted to do some e-mailing, so we went our separate ways and arranged to meet up in the afternoon to go up the SkyTower. When I met Mark in the afternoon he seemed a bit agitated but I didn’t think anything of it. We went for a drink (he had a large glass of wine and I noticed that he drank it very quickly!) before going up the SkyTower in time to watch the sun set over the City of Sails. We went to the very top of the tower, there was hardly anyone about and the sun was reflecting golden, orange and crimson rays over the water. It was beautiful. I turned to look out of the window, turned around to comment to Mark about how wonderful it looked and he had gone! Then I looked down and saw him on one knee with a box with the most perfect ring inside! I burst into tears and flung my arms around him. He assumed that to be a ‘yes’!
Mark later told me that he hadn’t planned on buying the ring until he had left me to buy his camera. He said as soon as we got to New Zealand it just felt right and he knew he had to propose. We spent two glorious days being the only two people to know, giggling like shcool kids in excitement about it all and then ran up the most enormous phone bill calling all our friends and family at home to tell them the news! We then spent the next month on an ‘engagement honeymoon’ travelling The Lord of the Rings country! The wedding is set for 14th May 2005 and we can’t wait!