A year ago today James and I were huffing it up a hill to catch a sunset in Florence, Italy [where I was absolutely certain I’d be strolling back down with a new sparkly ring on my finger.] The proposal didn’t happen exactly as I [or James…] had anticipated – but it did happen! And when it did, it was the best.
A lot’s gone on since this time last year [got married, moved to NY, made new friends, acquired a kitten, and received orders to relocate to Bangor, WA next month] but today we look back on our very own proposal story – written last spring for our wedding website, and posted below for the sake of remembering.
The Proposal Our Adventure.
James and Emma had planned a wonderful trip to Athens, Florence and Rome to visit her parents over the holidays and to see the world. They arrived in Greece on December 23rd and spent Christmas with her family. They saw the Acropolis, ruins of Corinth, had lunch by the shore in Nafplio, and saw the sights of downtown Athens. They also enjoyed a lot of delicious Greek food before going off on their own to take a plane, a train and a train to Florence, Italy.
Florence was beautiful. Holiday lights hung in all the side streets, a man played an accordion in the afternoons outside their window—and they had a lovely view of the Arno River.
They climbed 500 steps to view Florence from Brunelleschi’s famous Duomo, and they ate the most delicious Panini’s on earth. Emma ordered Lasagna 5 times while in Italy—no apologies. They saw Michelangelo’s David at the Accademia, and had a private tour of renaissance art in the Uffizi by a half Greek, half Italian man named Leonardo. He wore plaid pants and a red jacket. James and Emma soaked up every moment in Florence.
On the last night of their stay, James noted that the sun was going to set very close to 4:30 in the afternoon. They were going to see a beautiful view! They happily strolled across the river, taking a few photos along the way. They soon started up a hill that supposedly led to the aforementioned beautiful view. Up and up they went! It was a steep hill and the sun was beginning to set, so they decided to pick up the pace a little.
And then… they FINALLY reached the top! …onlllyyy to have to walk right back down again. They had taken a wrong turn. Or, as James likes to call it—they “went on a little adventure.”
They eventually reached the bottom of the hill and saw the intended stairs to the top! The sunset was upon them. James and Emma could not have climbed the stairs / hill / hill of stairs any faster. They were almost there… they were nearly there…and then they were there!!! And it was…extremely crowded. Disappointingly crowded. Flooded with tour buses crowded! They had not expected this.
Although it was an absolutely stunning view of Florence at sunset, Emma remembers not being completely thrilled by the sight. “Eh, the view from the Duomo was just as good,” she whispered. She was happy to be there with James, but had been growing suspicious of a proposal. And now the sun had officially set on their final night in Florence! They had plans for the next morning to meet back up with Emma’s parents and sister for New Years in Rome.
So back down the stairs / hill / hill of stairs they went. The sun had set. They crossed back over the river, had wine and cheese at their new favorite wine bar, and took a moment to rest. James had picked out a restaurant on Santa Croce Square for their final dinner in Florence. They had toured the beautiful white church on the square just the day before and loved the area for its…well, lack of popularity.
They strolled up to the nearly vacant, much more private square and lingered by an empty bench. James proceeded to say some very, very sweet things to Emma before getting down on one knee and asking her to marry him and be with him always.
She said yes! James got up to give Emma a hug…and then got back down again to give her the most beautiful, most perfect ring that has ever graced the planet earth.
Then they went to dinner on the square. Very happy…and tired. But mostly happy.
And Emma ordered lasagna.