Tara and I had been talking about getting marriedfor a while. So, when I finally bought the ring, a beautiful 1.36caret, princess-cut diamond in a platinum setting, I knew I hadto be sneaky when popping the question. My job has had me on theroad for most of the year, and I don’t get to see Tara very much.So I knew I would be home for a week before Valentine’s Day andwanted to propose. But, if I suggested a special dinner or anythingthe seemed overly special, she would know that the proposal wason its way and the surprise would be blown.
So, I arranged for a friend to get her out ofthe house for a while and while she was gone, I would transformour tiny one-bedroom apartment into a romantic hideaway. On theday I had this planned a woke up at 7 am. I was very excited andcouldn’t sleep. My friend, Dave, was going to come over around 12:30to take Tara out shopping for about 1/2 an hour, just long enoughfor me to make the transformation.
On his way back, he would pretend to check hismessages on his cell phone but, call me instead. At about noon,Tara started bringing a bunch of boxes and odds and ends from ourbed room and stacking it in the kitchen. The day before, Tara andI had talked about rearranging the apartment. This was going tobe a big job. We were moving the bedroom to the living room and vice versa. Well, Tara decided to get a head start on the move beforeDave came over, getting as much of the stuff out of the bedroomas possible. So while she was moving stuff around, I discreetlycalled Dave and told him to come get her now, because she’s rippingthe apartment apart.
Finally, Dave camedown and off they went. But not before the damage had been done.I only had a half hour to get this done and now I had the addedtask of reassembling the apartment. After I saw them leave the buildingfrom our front window, I went into “Mission Impossible” mode. Icould hear the music playing in my head as I ran around and reassembledour apartment. That done, I ran up to Dave’s apartment, where Ihad stored the four dozen roses, the dozen candles and the streamers.I had just started setting up when the phone rang. That was Dave’ssignal and I wasn’t anywhere near being done. As I answered thephone in fear. I heard the voice of another friend saying, “HeyJoe. What’s up?” All I could say was, “Can’t talk. Call you back.”
Relieved, I continued to setup. I left a trailof long stem red roses from the front door through the kitchen downthe hall into the bedroom. Around the room I had placed red candlesand I hung red streamers in the doorway so she couldnÕt see intothe room. On the bed, I spread out the rest of the roses. I putthese two huge stuffed Teddy bears that she’s had since she wasa little girl on the bed and a little red bear in the middle holdingthe ring box. When she arrived I was waiting with 2 glasses of wineand “My Romance” playing throughout the apartment.
She walked in andsaid “What’s this?” As she scanned the room, she saw the littlebear holding the ring box and she gasped, “Really?” I handed hera glass of wine. I told her how much I loved her and that I wantedto spend the rest of my life with her. I got down on one knee. Shecovered her eyes saying “Oh My God!” I told her she had to lookat me while I did this. She did. I asked her to marry me and shesaid yes. There were many tears of joy & kissing and hugging. Wecalled a lot of people to tell them the happy news. Then, we rearrangedthe apartment.
New York, NY