At the small college where my husband and I met, a girl would announce her engagement by holding a "Candle Party". She would tell only her best friends who would then set up the party in the lobby of the girls dorm one evening. Posters would go up announcing the party and all the girls would gather after curfew. Usually someone would sing or read a poem, then a lit candle would be passed with the engagement ring tied to it. Everyone would "Ooooh" and "Aaaah" and try to guess who it was who had gotten engaged. After the first round, the candle would be passed a second time and when it came to the lucky girl she would blow out the candle–letting everyone know it was her! She would then put the ring on, the guys who were waiting outside the front doors would go grab the guy, the girls would grab her, and they would both be thrown in the pool, amid shouts of congratulations and whoops of laughter!
Richard and I had met the first day of classes the year before. It was a small college so we had a number of classes together, and I liked him from the start. Eventually we became good friends, but we did not start dating until December of my second year in college.
The following May some friends of mine asked me to help with a "Candle Party", by making the posters, and putting together the flowers and candle. Then the guitar player asked me to hold her music for her while she sang, so I was sitting right up front. The candle went around once, then twice, but no one blew it out! Everyone was wispering and asking questions, thinking something had gone wrong. Suddenly they all became absolutely quiet as my best friend took the candle from the girl who held it, brought it over to me, and said, "Josi, blow out the candle." I replied, "But…it’s…not…my…party!" She said, "Yes it is. Blow out the candle, Richard wants to marry you!"
I started crying, and everyone else started screaming and laughing and hugging me! My friend kept saying, "Blow out the candle! Blow out the candle!" She finally gave up and blew it out for me! When they threw us in the pool Richard wanted to see the ring on my hand, and then I realized I had forgotten to take it off the candle and put it on! Did I get teased about that for a long time!
People kept saying, "You must have had some idea that he was going to ask you!" but I honestly did not! We had talked about marriage and families in general, but never us in particular. Even though I hoped he might ask me one day, it never occured to me that he would be so tricky about it!
One of the guys asked Richard how he had the courage to do the surprise without knowing I would say yes, and he just replied, "Of course I knew she would say yes!" This June we will celebrate our 27th anniversary, so you can see he was right!
Proposal Story By:
Port Angeles, AZ