>Two explorers met. She had a pen. He had a notebook. Together they began to write a map. One day, he had to pack his suitcase and venture to Japan for one year. Just before the year was up, the boy asked the girl to make a promise with him. She said yes.
The boy: Six foot tall, messy brown curls, and a mean sense of fun.
The girl: An over-eager university student (guilty, but I can't help it), wedding magazine writer, and lover of cafés big or small.
How did he do it?
On a chilly morning I woke to another day knowing my best friend was still on his adventure in Japan while I was definitely still in Australia. Thankfully I remembered today would be special as I was going to surprise the boy by painting his room before he came home. The necessary outfit of a grey jumper and jeans presented itself to me. Moments later I was picked up by his mother to go and collect new furniture for his room.
I have to quickly intrude to mention that the resident trickster had told me he would be visiting friends in the mountains this weekend. His email the night before expressing his outing confirmed this. Needless to say, although his mother drove us towards a favourite date spot of ours, I was assured he was in Japan. What a treat for us that his mother now knew someone who lived on our beloved street.
My last moments as a ring-less girl happened in a blur. His mother casually pulled up at the end of the street, which happens to be a spectacular headland that overlooks our boat-filled harbour. In a true clueless minute, the sign reading my name by the car park was, to me, simply a hilarious coincidence, until his mother looked at me, started crying and basically had to tell me to get out of the car.
A boy, taller than I remembered, stood with his back to me at the end of a path covered in pink and white rose petals. With legs that had conveniently forgotten how to walk, I managed to manoeuvre four little tables signed 'something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue'. An old vintage suitcase began my journey, mirroring my love for travel. A beautiful set of Venetian glass bookends - my adoration for books and words almost goes without saying. An antique silver tea set were stolen from his mother's kitchen and placed delicately on a table.
When I reached the boy, he turned around and in his hands was a duck-egg blue box, which he proceeded to open while bending down on one knee.
Would I do the honour of marrying him. The promise was presented. To spend forever with him as he spends forever with me. He sealed it with the antique rose gold ring, set with seed pearls and rubies.
As if that is not enough, he then took me shopping to pick out my engagement ring. Please welcome into our world the most precious vintage gold and citrine piece of jewellery I have ever seen.
The rest, is our future.
So hooray! I am still the same girl. One day older. Still a university lover, wedding magazine writer, and café goer, only now we get to plan a wedding in between. Which presents the potential of a problem and a fork in the road. Down one track goes the girl prone to bridezilla tendencies. However, down the other road less travelled is the beacon of hope, the glowing torch held by now-wed women who kept calm and carried on. If you are a bride or one of the sisterhood who hopes to be one day, take the mantle with me and set forth upon this path.
If you have entered into wife life, I salute you. Your advice is like a treasure map handed down, and I will attempt to do you proud. For the rest of us, there is The Mission, if you so choose to accept it: To enjoy this ride and have one adventure worth living.