18. July 2006 18:37
That's right, Kristin and I are engaged. Late Saturday night/early Sunday morning we went on our 4th edition of the LATE ride
. The LATE ride is a early AM bikeride through various parts of Chicago that benefits the Chicago Park System
and generally draws about 8000 riders. This event has a lot of history and memories for us, so I thought it would be the perfect occasion to propose. I first did the ride in 2003 soon after I met Kristin and soon after I moved to Chicago. I had just started travelling to California for work, so I still didn't know people very well. A group from church was going and I thought it sounded like a lot of fun. On that first ride, Kristin and I ended up riding together for quite a bit of the ride. Between racing ahead of the others and trying to beat each other (4th grade flirting in retrospect), we had a fairly serious conversation where I talked to Kristin a lot about my background and past. I think it freaked her out a bit, but she also was intrigued and was a great listener. This was well before we started dating, but I already thought she was really cool and wanted to get to know her better. On the 2004 ride, I had just quit traveling and was back in Chicago and we had been through quite a bit of back and forth over whether or not we should date. We emailed a ton while I was traveling and had some really good phone conversations as well. So on that ride we were flirting a lot, much to the disgust (and amusement) of our friends. and a few months later we were officially dating. And then last year we did the ride as a couple and actually had a bit of an argument at the end and ended up having a really good conversation about it and talking about some cool things. Anyway, there are more details, but you'll have to ask me because I'm not going to post them here.
The ring barely made it in time as they finished setting it Saturday morning and I had to sneak up to pick it up without Kristin knowing. I figured at some point she would be looking through my bag for something, so I hid it in a little plastic baggie inside the plastic case of a tire repair kit. Good thing too, because she went through my bag looking for my phone at one point. The sun was coming up as we were finishing the ride and we almost stopped to watch, but we were so nearly done we decided to finish. We walked over to Buckingham Fountain where there were tons of people scattered about and found a spot that was at least somewhat private to watch the sunrise. And that's when I asked her and she said yes (once again, you'll have to ask if you want more details).
Although we were fairly exhausted and didn't get much sleep, I had made reservations for the evening at Spring
to celebrate. Kristin was radiant and beautiful despite the fatigue and very excited when she found out where we were going. She didn't know until we were walking up to the restaurant. We had also visited Green Zebra
which was created by the same chef and really enjoyed that. We had a delightful waiter who was very funny and charming. We didn't want to drink too much since we were already half asleep, but we did want some wine. So he just paired some half glasses with our appetizer (grilled octopus) and soup (heirloom tomato gazpacho) and then a full glass with our entree. Kristin had the sockeye salmon and I had scallops with oxtail. Both were just amazing. Then the waiter treated us to glasses of moscato to celebrate and we had this delectable chocolate peanut butter bar dessert with homemade peanut butter ice cream. yum. what a day, what a day.
There are a couple of pictures on Flickr
and I'll be adding more before long.