It was going to be a fun day. But...it didn’t start out that way. Greg and I were headed to Port Angeles to board a ferry. Victoria, British Columbia was our destination. Planning to spend the day exploring the seaside Canadian town, we drove three hours from where we were staying to the ferry terminal. We enjoyed the scenic drive through the mountains and trees of the Puget Sound area.
Upon arrival, Greg told the customs officer that he had his passport…..it just happened to be on the kitchen table where he left it. The officer said, "I’m sorry, Sir, we can’t allow you to board." Greg frantically searched his phone for a photo of his passport. We were holding up the departure and after a few minutes the officer said, “We have to depart now. If you can promise you can have someone email you a copy of your passport and show it to me before we get to Canada, I can let you board.” Greg assured him. Thankfully, he found the copy on his phone within minutes of boarding. Whew!
The ride over was breathtaking. We had taken a ferry from Anacortes to Friday Harbor the weekend prior. On the lookout for whales the entire time, we had failed to spot any. We were on watch once again. While we didn’t see any whales, we spotted lots of jelly fish and a few seals as we took in the surroundings. The entire ride over was exhilarating; the beauty intoxicating. Romance was certainly in the air as Greg and I would catch glimpses of each other and smile.
After the 90 minute boat ride, we entered the harbor in Victoria. I was taken aback by the site of the town. Old architecture, colorful buildings, greenery, all surrounded by the most gorgeous blue water, on a clear day with perfect weather. We were excited to explore the town.
The day only got better as Greg and I walked around. After visiting the historic Parliament Building, we went to the Empress Hotel. I could have stared at the design elements of the Empress for hours. The grand coffered ceilings, the carved stair railings, the dark wood, intricate details everywhere you looked. Stunning. The day would continue to be filled with inspiring architecture.
We cruised the town. Sunny and breezy. Perfection. As afternoon approached, our appetites were in full swing. A pizza joint with the BEST pizza we had ever tasted would fit the bill! (Famoso Neapolitan Pizzaria if you are ever there...YUM) With our full and satisfied bellies, we headed back for the ferry and boarded once again.
The ride back to Port Angeles would continue to delight. As the sun began to set, the sky lit up with every color of the rainbow spread in full panorama, beginning with the moon. Many people were piling onto the front deck to capture the picturesque sky. I leaned out over the bow to take a picture. Unknowingly, I leaned out right in front of someone else taking a photo. Greg said, “Sweetie, you are right in his shot.” I said, “Oh I’m sorry, I didn’t realize,” to the man. He said, “Oh no worries. Where are ya’ll from?” We chatted for some time as we all continued to photograph the amazing light show. Johnny and Brittany were vacationing from Atlanta. Johnny had a nice camera and we asked him if he was a photographer. He was an engineer, but enjoyed photographing on the side. We wrapped up the conversation as we realized the deck was starting to empty as people headed back inside.
Greg and I decided to go inside as well. As we walked along the deck, still taking in the surrounding beauty, Greg stopped me. He told me he loved me very much and he wanted to spend the rest of his life with me. He pulled a ring from his pocket and asked me to be his wife. When I saw the ring, a well of emotions surfaced. Grief and gratitude. Greg’s Mom had shown me this ring the year prior. It was the ring Greg’s biological Father gave his Mom when he asked her to marry him. Greg’s biological Father was killed in action when Greg was young. Words can’t describe the sentiment and honor I felt when he presented that ring to me. He was also proposing in the Port Angeles area, which was where his Father and Mother met and fell in love.
With my heart welling I said, “Yes.” Greg put the ring on my finger. After Greg put the ring on my finger, he said, “Wait, you said yes, right?” I laughed and said, “Yes, I said yes.” We laughed hard and hugged and kissed. Shortly after, we saw a whale surface just off the boat, our one and only whale of the whole trip! It was truly a magical moment.
Greg explained that his Mom wanted to give us her ring, to enjoy and pass down. Greg wanted me to have it to wear while I design my own engagement ring. I told him I’m privileged to wear only this one, but he was adamant that I design my own ring as well. So not only will I treasure this immensely special ring, but I get to design my own ring too! Two rings = lucky girl 😊
Our new friends from Atlanta had already gone inside. We found them and shared the exciting news! They were thrilled and insisted on taking our photo to commemorate the special evening:
When Greg tells the story of our engagement, he jokes that he planned the whole thing juuuust perfectly. He says, “I just whispered, ‘Cue sunset.’ ‘Ok, now cue whale.’” Lol. It sure was extraordinary.
We are excitedly planning our wedding for next year and can’t wait to share that day with our loved ones.