First off, no I'm not one of those guys who proposes at a Cubs game. Although I did think about it.
I first wanted to propose to Suzie while we were just watching TV the night before we left. We spend some good time together on that sofa watching TV and I wanted to make that special. Needless to say, when was the last time you weren't running around all hectic the night before you took a big trip? Yeah, we didn't spend that night just resting and relaxing watching TV. Nope, we spent the night packing.
Instead I thought it would be great to propose to Suzie Saturday night at Navy Pier, on the Ferris Wheel with the fireworks all around. That didn't happen. Suzie wanted to go to Navy Pier during the day, so she could see everything. That's ok, I took the ring anyways. As we started to go up in the Ferris Wheel, she was listening very intently to the audio guided tour of the skyline of Chicago. She loves architecture and was just too into it to interrupt with a silly little proposal.
That's ok, I figured we'll go to a really fancy dinner and I can propose there. Yeah, no. Suziewanted to go to the House of Blues for dinner. Now, if you haven't been, the HoB is nowhere near what anyone would call a dive. However, it ain't fine dining either. And, given my usual demeanor, it would have been fairly out of character for me to protest too much here. So, in the name of keeping it a secret, HoB for dinner it was!
The night was great. We went bowling (classy for sure), had dinner, went to Harry Caray's bar, and had a blast. As the evening wore down, I suggested dessert at the steakhouse down by the Chicago River called Smith and Wollensky's (apparently, it's a chain, but it's nice). It was wonderful, Suzie and I split the coconut cake. Before the cake got there, I excused myself to the "restroom".
Fortunately for me, the restaurant is set up in small rooms, so Suzie didn't see me grab waitress and manager over. I gave the waitress the ring and asked her to slip it in the bill book.
The cake was great! We were engaged in some conversation - of which I can't recall - when the bill was dropped off. Honestly, I was just rambling on and on so that I wouldn't be so nervous. Normally I would reach for the check, but I think Suzie was getting tired of the conversation and grabbed the check. When she opened the bill book, there she noticed the ring.
At first she said, "oh no, some poor woman lost her ring!" I looked and muttered something along the lines that it was a shame.
Now at this point, I had it all planned in my head. As she realized that it was meant for her, I would swoop down to one knee and ask her to marry me. In reality, here's how it went:
Suzie's voice kinda faded off as she stared at the ring and suddenly it dawned on her that the ring was meant for her. Her eyes shot up and in them were big wonderful tears welling up inside, just bursting to frolic and flow down her cheeks in happiness. It was those eyes that got me. Rather than play it cool, I began to choke up too. I could barely spit out the words "Will you marry me?" Those tears in Suzie's eyes got an opportunity to flow after all as she vigorously nodded and smiled, shaking the tears out.
The manager and waitress brought over a very nice bottle of champagne for us to celebrate with, compliments of the house. At first, the tears in both our eyes made him think that things didn't quite work out as I had planned, but we both reassured him that she said "YES!!!"
Bobby was totally acting weird that day. He kept on insisting we see the fireworks at the Navy Pier. I was like, 1) I've seen fireworks before and 2) we're not doing anything this morning, let's go to the pier. I finally told him, I'm not opposed to seeing the fireworks, so let's see how we feel tonight- if we're up to it or not. Plus, Bobby had been to this town with an ex and they had seen the fireworks I think is what he told me, so I wanted to go do things that he hadn't done before and have firsts with him in this city (and what a first it was!). I had never been to Chi-town and wanted to make it a unique visit for the both of us. So I got my wish to go to the pier in the morning. We rode the Ferris wheel there, and I remember Bobby trying to talk to me during the ride, but I was like, "shhh, I'm trying to listen to the audio tour of the skyline!" I would later feel bad about quieting him as he told me he wanted to pop the question when we were in the Ferris wheel. Of course the way the proposal did happen, I don't think anything else would have been as perfect. But I'll get to that.
He also kept on insisting that we eat dinner at Smith and Wollensky's. I worried about how we can't really afford a place like that. Plus, we were staying at the House of Blues, and I really wanted to check out their restaurant/bar and music. He finally gave up and let me book us a dinner reservation at the House of Blues. Oh my Jeebus, they have the best mac and cheese, and even if it wasn't romantic, it was very good and fun.
After dinner he was like, let's go to the pier for fireworks. I said, but you have never gotten to go to Harry Carry's, and it is just right around the corner. I think I even started walking that way, so Bobby had to follow. I really enjoyed Harry Carry's. The bartenders were totally friendly, the beer was really good, and the company was even better. And I could tell that Bobby was totally happy to get to have a beer in the world famous, one of the mecca spots for Cubs fans, Harry Carry's.
We decided it was time to leave the bar. As much as we both enjoyed it, we were ready to do something else. Of course, Bobby's true motive for leaving was to find a place to propose, and my true motive, might have been because I was hungry and wanted dessert (those who know me well, know I love sugar and probably aren't surprised by my true motives to leave). Bobby suggests dessert at Smith and Wollensky's. I finally agreed to one of his suggestions. I'm sure glad I did.
We went there, got a great seat near a window, ordered one of the best coconut cakes evor, and started to have one of the greatest conversations evor (yes, evor not ever). I can't really remember exactly what was said, but we talked about everything, like our friends, families, hopes and fears. And we talked about our future, not specifically about marriage, just about how we were going to do this or that in the future (like more trips together, fixing up more of the house, etc). In the midst of this deep and profound talk, Bobby said he had to go the bathroom. Little did I know that he was talking to our waitress. I definitely did not see them talking. A few moments later, he's back, and we picked up where we left off.
The bill gets dropped off and we're still way involved with what we’re talking about. After a few minutes, I thought, it's getting late, I'm sure the server would like us to pay and leave soon, so I reach for the bill book (which isn't that common, but not that uncommon, as we have a joint account, and we pay for a lot of our meals that way, so I was willing to pull out my card to our joint account). I open the bill book, and to my surprise, there is a ring. For some reason, I thought someone had lost or misplaced their ring. I didn't think it was mine, but that was only for like 15 seconds because in those 15 seconds, it dawns on me that this ring is intended for me! It is from Bobby to me! It's an engagement ring. I totally got tears in my eyes, and I finally met Bobby's eyes, and he spits out something like will you marry me, and I nod my head yes quite vigorously, and then the tears totally start to pour. The tears are very hard to stop. And Bobby totally tears up too. That's why I love him.
It was kinds funny when the manager and waitress comes over with the champagne, starts to say congrats, but then is like, is everything ok, did she say yes? I guess we looked like I had said no and were breaking up. We reassured them I said yes, and that these tears were tears of happiness. We made a toast to us with the very tasty champagne, and then rushed to our hotel room to call and share the good news with our friends and family. Bobby tells the story in a very funny way that makes it seem like I was trying to ruin his plans for the perfect proposal, but I didn't know that is why he was acting all weird, assertive and insistent. Looking back, it all makes sense as to the way he was acting, but if I had known, we wouldn't have ended such a great day in the best way possible. And we wouldn't have this story! Perfect ending to a not so perfect story. :)