Thursday, July 15, 2010

A Top of the Rock Proposal

Jeff had it all planned. A weekend in New York—nothing more romantic. He and Kara dressed up. An evening at Cirque de Soleil. Then a walk to Rockefeller Center.

“Let’s go skating,” he said. Kara didn’t want to lace up borrowed skates under her nice dress.

No worries. Jeff had Plan B ready. The little box was burning a hole in his pocket.

“Let’s go to Top of the Rock,” he suggested.

Kara liked that idea. She slipped through security’s metal detector, but Jeff was called back. He’d set off the beeper. Watch off. Belt off. Keys and change out of his pocket. Try again.

More beeping.

“What else have you got in your pocket?” the guard asked. Jeff took out the little box and held it to his chest. The guard had to step closer to see what he was gripping—close enough for Jeff to whisper.

“I’m going to propose,” he said.

“Okay, go on through,” the guard said. Security has a heart.

“What was the problem?” Kara asked.

“Faulty metal detector,” Jeff said. Was it the hinges on the velvet box that caused the uproar?

If you haven’t been to the observatory deck at the top of Rockefeller Center, you’re missing out—especially at night. Glittering city lights. The river dark and silent in the distance. It’s as if you own all of New York for a few magical moments.

And in those moments Jeff pulled out the little box and got down on one knee. He opened the box and looked up at the love of his life.

“Will you marry me?” he said.

“Are you serious?” she said. “Are you serious? Are you serious?”

“Yes, I’m serious.” He fitted the ring on her finger. “And I need an answer.”

“Yes,” she said. “Yes, yes, yes!”

They were married a year later at the Inn at Baldwin Creek just down the road from Fern Forest. After the wedding, after the reception, after their first night as man and wife at the inn, the next day they found their way to Fern Forest Treehouse with their doggie Stella. "STEL-LA!" I can't say that name without yelling it, and I liked the puppy at once.

We had a vase of flowers and cold beer waiting for them on that hot afternoon. Nibbling popcorn, we watched the end of the World Cup final until time to get ready for dinner. H made them a reservation at the Bobcat Café, and we were off with friends to Inn at Baldwin Creek—there’s not much choice about where to eat around here, and you can’t lose with either venue.

When we returned to Fern Forest, the newlyweds and Stella were already nestled in the treehouse. In the morning we made them chocolate croissant French toast with macerated fruit, whipped cream and Vermont maple syrup, Vermont granola, and Greek yogurt. While they ate, we learned that Kara has a master’s degree in education and teaches two-year-olds near their home in Poughkeepsie. She chose Vermont for her wedding because her father is vice president at nearby Middlebury College. Jeff is saving the world as a sustainability consultant for an organization that provides “go green” initiatives to lower the carbon footprint at colleges. These two are working to save the world, one child and one college at a time. They even rescued Stella from a puppy pound.

After breakfast, the go-getter couple left to climb Mt. Abe before heading back to New York. Jeff and Kara are full of vitality and optimism about the future, and we were energized by their stay with us. Jeff promises to bring Kara back to Fern Forest for their first anniversary, and we plan to hold them to that. We’re eager to see what the first year of marriage brings them—and we hope they bring Stella with them, too.

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