Obviously grandpa thought it was a great idea, despite your dad being southern he talked A LOT about football and was a competent DIYer so all was good.
Although we’d decided very quickly that we were in things for the long haul it took your dad almost forever to ask me to marry him. Two summers after we got together we went away to Barbados (him with the school on a cricket tour and me flying out once that had finished). Surrounded beautiful beaches, sunshine and a party atmosphere this would have been a perfect time to ‘pop the question’. Despite this amazing setting and plenty of hints from me it wasn’t to be. People at work were convinced that we would come back engaged and had pestered him about it a lot before we went away. However, as you’ve probably already figured out, your dad is pretty stubborn and never does anything unless it is his decision (a trait I’m already seeing in you Evelyn) so it ended up not happening then or anytime in the following two years.
Finally, we decided by 2011 that if we were going to fit around other weddings already in the pipe line we probably should be doing it before the year was out. A consequence of this being, that if he wanted to do things traditionally he was now really up against the clock and as always with me and your dad it all ended up very last minute. He insisted on asking grandpa if it was ok but as we didn’t see them all the time that was fairly tricky to organise. We had planned a trip to Italy for May half term so when we went up North at Easter your dad took his chance. Obviously grandpa thought it was a great idea, despite your dad being southern he talked A LOT about football and was a competent DIYer so all was good. Grandpa was so pleased in fact he even congratulated me before we left, at which point I had to remind him your dad hadn’t actually officially ‘asked me yet’!
A few weeks later we were ready for our Italian retreat. We stayed just outside Florence in the village of Artimino and spent the time exploring the area, eating and people watching, the only way to spend time in Italy. On the evening of June 1st we sat at the top of the steps of Piazzale Michelangelo and looked over Florence as the sun set. On the way up there we’d stopped off for a drink, in fact your dad actually had quite a few, he said afterwards it was because he needed the Dutch courage although I’m not sure why. We sat on the steps and talked and laughed and then he took me over to a little bench got down on one knee and asked if I would marry him. Of course I said yes. Even though I knew it was coming it was very romantic and I was over the moon (although a little worried that the little bench was private property and we might get told off for sitting there). Your dad had chosen a costume ring to propose with as he wanted to let me choose the ‘real’ one when we got home but I thought it was perfect and so when we got back we had an identical one made. The original ring actually turned a funny shade of green by the end of the holiday but I still kept it, it’s around, hidden away somewhere safe, in a place I can’t quite remember. Anyway, to celebrate we found a little restaurant on a beautiful piazza and ate bitecca alla fiorentina, drank wine and didn’t stop smiling. The following day I was on cloud nine and we excitedly let family and friends know that it was official, we were finally getting married and I we had a hell of a lot of planning to do.
Love mum xx