I have been telling you of the courtship between me and my husband, so Christi requested I tell the story of the "proposal." I guess after the proposal, I'll just have to tell about our wedding also. Now, that's a "story!" Stay tuned!
The Proposal . . .
In the Bloomin' Onion story, I mentioned K-'s friend from high school. He was talking to K- about wanting to take a trip up to Washington, DC to show his three children the Nation's capital and take them to the many historical places and museums located there. K- mentioned to him that he lived and worked up there for three years and that he would be glad to show them around anytime they wanted to go. A trip was planned for December, while the children were on Christmas vacation.
We were out for dinner with them one night when K- asked the children if they could persuade me to go with them on the trip to DC. Well, they were very persuasive and I said that I would.
We left on December 18 and planned to return on December 23. K- booked our hotel rooms at a hotel where he had planned meetings with his job in DC. We arrived around 11:00 pm and were very tired - imagine traveling with three children for 7 hours! The fellows shared a room and we girls shared a suite.
We took in all the sights and sounds of Washington, DC at Christmastime. We went to church service at Washington National Cathedral. It was a wonderful service and I enjoyed seeing the architecture and reading about the history of the church. We also took a tour of the many chapels located within it. The Smithsonian Museum was next on our list. There are too many to cover in just a few days, so we just went to the Air and Space museum and the Natural History museum. We visited the National Archives and saw the Declaration of Independence and the other founding documents for our country.
I wanted to see the Holocaust Museum, but the others didn't. I was so disappointed, so K- suggested we break away from them for a while. He and I went to the museum and it was the most moving and emotional experience I had ever had! The artifacts and pictures were unbelievable in their effect. It was as if you were experiencing the tragedy yourself. Tears could not be contained as I walked through. The most moving display for me was a pile of shoes - hundreds of pairs of shoes - that had been recovered from the concentration camps upon liberation. Men's shoes, ladies' shoes, and the shoes of the children! Millions of them!
How can there be so much evil in the world? How could six million people be exterminated?
After that, I did not feel like sightseeing the rest of the day. Too much sadness! I wasn't quite as cheerful as I had been earlier. How could one be, after experiencing only a minute piece of history and realizing just how horrible it must have been for the Jews and others who dared go against Hitler and the Nazi Party?
That night we went out to dinner and quite frankly, I did not enjoy the company. I was still affected, emotionally, from the visit to the museum. I had to restrain myself from breaking up, because I just did not feel "happy and cheerful" like the others. When we got back to the hotel, I was ready to turn in. Maybe tomorrow would be a better day.
It was a better day! God gave me a good night's rest and I was able to sort out my feelings. I forget the order of the day's events, but they included the Capitol building tour, the tour of the White House that our Congressman arranged for us and the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and others. We had a great time! That evening, we had tickets for a dinner theater. My Fair Lady was being performed and it was great! We all enjoyed the performance and the meal as well.
The next day, we went to the National Cemetery and saw the changing of the guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. It was a very solemn event also. We also went to the shops located at Pentagon City. You would know we had to get some shopping in! We found out that the other couple had their anniversary that day, so K- and I decided we would keep the children back at the hotel so they could spend some time together without the children. We took them back and ordered pizza and watched TV. Thank goodness we had two TV's in our suite. Too many cartoons for me!
The next day was a horrible day for me, I was unused to all the noise that three children could make and the "threats" of "certain" punishment for those who "didn't straighten up." Each time K- and I would suggest somewhere to go, they were uninterested. There's more, but you get the point, don't you? I wasn't a happy camper. Every time, K- and I thought we could find a moment alone, here came the children. We were their "playmates" and I had "played out!" K- realized that I was not having fun, so he said we would make some time together that night. We went out to dinner and looked around for a while and then returned to the hotel. K- told his friend that he was taking me out to see the Lincoln Memorial and that we would return later.
We took his friend's Expedition and drove around DC. We visited the Lincoln Memorial, and then the Vietnam Memorial - all of which was spectacular at night! As we walked on the Mall, we went to the annual display of Christmas trees representing each state. They were beautiful all lit up and decorated! On our way back to the Expedition, K- noticed a horse and carriage that was taking people for rides around the Mall. He took me to the carriage stop and we got the last tour of the night! We got into the carriage and began the tour. He was pointing out the different monuments as we passed and was telling me a little history about them. When we rounded the end next to the White House, he directed my attention to an UGLY blue wreath that hung on the White House and said, "The Clinton's are having a blue Christmas!" (This was the time when the impeachment proceedings were going on.) Of course, I thought that was hilarious and I started laughing. When I looked back at him, he held in his hand, a 1-carat diamond engagement ring!
I was speechless! He said, "You and I have talked about marriage before, and I didn't feel the time was right for me to ask you, but I do now. Will you marry me?" Without any doubt in my mind, I said "Yes!" The very worst day of the trip was suddenly transformed into the very best day of our trip. We talked a little about setting the date, and continued on the ride. The driver realized what was happening and gave us a little extra time and when the carriage ride was over, congratulated us! My husband now tells everyone, he had to promise me that someday we would live in the White House in order for me to marry him! I have NO DESIRE for that house!
That is the story of "The Proposal." I will tell you a little more about our trip to DC from my husband's viewpoint. I think it is hilarious!