Boyf and I got engaged in August, on the beach in Bali. I haven’t posted about the proposal because it’s private. Just kidding, nothing is private at our place. It’s because it’s taken me this long to get over the idea of how it was supposed to be.
I had spent a lot of time thinking about our engagement, but I hadn’t devoted much energy to the proposal itself. I did quite a bit of worrying about the ring. I really didn’t want him to go for a three carat, flawless, D grade, round diamond in a platinum setting and band with shoulder diamonds, when a two carat, F grade round in platinum with a plain yellow gold band would have been sufficient.
I also have big traps and a sway back with a moderately large caboose, and I wasn’t convinced I’d be able to find a wedding dress to suit my shape. And my hair – I cut it. Should I grow it back? Or get one of those hair ties made of synthetic hair that you put around your bun?
So there we were in Bali, 10 days into our three week holiday and I discovered the ring. I didn’t think there was a ring, because Boyf wasn’t being protective of his luggage (and had agreed to carry most of my shopping in his suitcase) and I didn’t think he would propose in Bali.
But there was the ring – in the bottom of the suitcase, where he’d chucked it after I’d thwarted his third attempt at a proposal the day before. Honestly, who wants to go for a long walk on the beach when you can drink cocktails by the pool? He could have put the ring in one of my many strawberry mojitos and been done with it.
So after I found the bling, I started planning the proposal. We were about to be Ubud bound and I was quite sure that it was going to be on top of a mountain at sunrise, or beside the infinity edge pool overlooking the rainforest. Maybe he was going to book me a massage and strategically place the ring under the table so when I looked through the face hole there it would be. Poor guy, I was setting him up for failure and he had no idea.
So the time and place was set, and he was psyching himself up, while I was out shopping. I was late home, because, one word: Zara. I got back, he was all “let’s go down the beach and watch the sunset”, and I was all “wait, let me mix some drinks”.
I could let you think that I was blending up some mango dacquiris, but it really sets the scene if I confess that my holiday drink of choice was Red Bull and vodka. It’s so easy, you just buy a can of the good stuff, open ‘er up, take a large sip and then top it up with duty free vodka. And it’s so portable, you can pick it up and take it anywhere.
So we trot down to the beach, the sun had already set, or maybe it was too hazy for a sunset, I’m not sure, but it was a non-event. Boyf suggests that we take a walk. Once again, why would you walk down the beach when you could sit and drink Red Bull vodka like a classy couple?
Of all the beaches I’ve been to in this crazy old world, I’d say that Kuta Beach is up there with Patong Beach in Phuket, it’s no San Sebastian. There’s a dog here and there and some middle aged Aussie tourists who have been drinking all day, and more than one swimmer losing their suit in the surf.
We’re sitting there, Red Bull cans in hands, Boyf had his arm around my neck and his fist was clenched tight in my peripheral vision. ‘Oh gosh’, I think, ‘not here, not on this average beach with all these people around.’
“What’s in your hand?” I asked, and he replied “well I didn’t want to do it like this, but, here” and hands me the ring, “will you marry me?”.
I froze. Shut the front door, that did not just happen. “Are you going to get down on one knee?” I asked. “Babe-uh, there’s people around-uh”. No dropped knee, no speech, no rose petals, no orchestra, no plane pulling a “Marry me, Renee?” sign flying over the ocean, no flash mob, no Bruno Mars on the wireless.
So then the questions started coming thick and fast;
“Did you ask my dad?”
“What did he say?”
“He said “are you sure?” and I said “yes” and he said “well, fuck, it’s her you gotta convince”.”
“Did you tell anyone you were going to propose?”
“Just Miss M. Oh, and mum. And my brother and sister-in-law. And The Lads on WhatsApp. And Slick. Oh and my bosses. Oh, and some of the guys at work.”
“When did you get the ring?”
“Last July? A year ago?”
“What the fuck have you been waiting for?”
“Well we started talking about coming to Bali and I thought I’d propose here.”
Who does that? Who buys an engagement ring and leaves it in the wardrobe for 12 months? Do you have a heart? Was there not a single suitable time between then and now when you could have dropped a knee and given me a speech about being a 12/10 and the best god damn thing that ever happened to you?
So then we went out for a celebratory dinner and I had two platters to myself, because it’s my party and I’ll overeat if I want to. We ordered wine and half the menu and then the bill came and it was a cool three mill. Boyf hands over close to $400k – it’s his shout. The waiter comes back and Boyf waves him away with his hand “na mate, keep the change, it’s all yours”
“Na mate, knock yourself out”
“Uh, sir…there’s not enough money here”
And so began our engagement. He’s still Boyf, suits him better than Feyonce. Since then we’ve been through three weeks of open homes, an auction, a period of unemployment, a house move and a hangover from hell. The way the finances are looking it will be a backyard wedding, in the new house that will no doubt be awaiting landscaping. Bring a plate. Bring your own drinks. Oh, and there’ll be a wishing well, so bring cash. Lots of cash.