Thursday, June 23, 2011

Story of Us - His Part 3


He has finally finished his side of our story. (With Editorial Corrections and Comments in Red!)

I know, I was supposed to have this written ages ago but something happened; call it life, call it procrastination call it what you like but I finally got round to my final installment. (I call it laziness, if you're asking)

So I’m back on my way to America for two weeks, again I could have done anything else with my time. I could have gone to one of the 4 places I was originally going to (bragging yet again!), I could have actually started my new job and trained with the rest of my colleagues from the other company but no…. I chose to get on a plane and go back to see this girl I had left less than two weeks earlier. And anyway I have my training planned for my return.

I land in Orlando again and negotiate customs and immigration with no problems this time and as I walk through to the lounge area there she is, at least she was there to meet me this time, so we get my bags, head back to the car and start the journey to Jacksonville. This time was more like a vacation with Cassie showing me more touristy things such as the parks in Orlando, St. Augustine etc. of course there were more places to eat and I had to buy as many reeses (Reese's Cups were not in the UK at this point. I couldn't believe it the first time I heard this news. I said "Geez Reese's Cups are like their own food group over here!") as I could fit in my case to go back with, but on the whole I was on vacation this time and took it pretty easy. Two weeks later I head back to England to start my new job and prepare for Cassie’s trip over, Cassie at this point had booked a flight over to England and would be there for Valentine’s day, which suited me but I was a single guy living with my house mate Matt and the place was not exactly ready for female visitors. The next couple of weeks saw me getting into my new job, attempting to clean the house and generally just doing what I do.

So the day arrives and Cassie calls me en route to England, Heathrow is about 2 ½ hours from my house and she is due to land at 10pm so I have plenty of time to take care of my day before I have to set off, but I get to the airport at just the time her flight is due to land, there’s no point being early as she has to go through immigration and she took a US laden flight so it would be a while before she got through to where I was waiting. At the airport I got talking to a guy who was there to pick someone up and he told me the flight was running around 30 mins late. This turned into an hour and they finally landed at just after 11pm. (We were EARLY to London. They made us circle Heathrow for who knows how long before landing. BUT, I actually told him the flight was due to land at 10:55. That put us right on time!) She came through the doors into the waiting/pick up area and walked straight past me, AWESOME I’m that memorable! I called her and she turned round still not seeing me so I waived and she came over, everyone says our daughter looks like me so now all she has to do is hold Georgia up in front of her and check her face against the ones in the crowd. We kissed (obviously) and headed back to my car, she went to get in the wrong side and I asked if she really wanted to drive on the wrong side of the road the first time in England after such a long journey, she made some comment and sat in the passenger side.

The journey home was pretty straightforward as we don’t have all the eateries and things off the side of the road like they do here, but at one point Cassie did ask me why there were houses in the middle of the road and who would chose to live in the middle of a busy highway. I looked over to the central reservation and asked what she meant, no houses that I could see, she said “right there, there’s houses in the middle of the road”, I laughed and pointed out of my side of the car and said “that’s the middle of the road, see the cars over there going the other way”?, she made some comment and I laughed, it was dark so I’ll give her the benefit of a long days travelling and the dark. (Forget long days, traveling and dark, I was in a country driving on the WRONG side of the road! I'd never seen anything like it! Ever!)

Now here we are in England in February, if you’ve never been to England at that time of year it’s cold and wet and daylight is not very long, but I have plans and one of them involves something Cassie wanted to do… I asked what she wanted to do in her 5-6 days in England, her response nearly had me leaving her at the airport, she actually said she wanted to go to Paris!! (Trips to Europe, that's what the kids want. 22 countries in 3 days. {extra points if you can name the movie [except Casey!] } Forgive me for wanting to do it all. I'm American for crying out loud. I didn't realize all the underlying hatred between the French and English! ) Are you kidding me, here we have this entire country with so much to see and do (which we still have not done! Even with all our visits to England.) especially for someone who has never even stepped foot in it and she wants to go to France, not London, not see the country, FRANCE!! So being the nice bloke I am, I say nothing to her and book a hotel and tickets for the Eurostar to get us there. I tell her to this day, I’ve taken you once so any more trips are yours to take on your own. Not that I’m Xenophobic (???? Show off with your big words) you understand but there is a mutual dislike of French and English.

We are in Paris over Valentine’s day, you have to impress a girl right? and I have this ring with me which has very specific planning surrounding it’s being given. The idea was we would take a walk down the banks of the river Seine and at midnight I would propose, I mean, Paris at midnight on Valentine’s day who can say no? so we go out for a meal and take the Metro downtown to Notre Dame, we get off and walk around the cathedral before crossing the bridge and walking down the other side. Now remember I told you it was cold and miserable in England in February, well Paris is no different, it was FREEZING! Cassie has a cold (read FLU!) and we are walking with a wind blowing round us down the banks of the Seine and after a while I can’t feel my legs, Cassie is complaining (I was sick with the flu and he had me out at midnight, walking along a river, in the freezing cold. And for the record, I wasn't complaining, just freezing) and at 11:45 I give up and we look for a Metro station. We finally find one and head back to our hotel with me thinking “this girl has no stamina”.

The next day we grab the pastries and drinks from the hotel café and eat breakfast in our room (we did that every day of our stay there) (OMG the pastries! I want to go back just for the pastries!!) then head off to see the sights. Cassie is a big believer in jumping on sightseeing busses (travel trip ~ get a 48 hour pass on a sightseeing bus that lets you hop on and off. You can see everything from the bus the first go round and make notes on where you want to stop. On the second go round stop at the sights you wanted to take a closer look at. You don't miss a thing!) so we catch a taxi to the Eiffel tower and start from there. As we are standing underneath the tower I ask if she wants to go up, I’m thinking we can get to the top and I can propose there (Tom Cruise stole my idea for his proposal to Katie), the lines are pretty short and we can see Paris from the top. She says no she doesn’t feel like it and can we just catch a bus? (Again, I had the FLU! I said, "do you think it's a good idea for me to be going to the top with all that wind and it being so cold when I am sick" and he said "good point") GREAT! We walk to the bus stop just down street and jump on a sightseeing bus and travel round Paris on that, she’s not feeling great I later find out so we stay on the bus, no jumping off at the Louvre, no walk down the Champs Elyse, just riding a bus. By now I’m thinking I’ll be proposing at some Metro station or on the train back home, we finally get to the stop across the river from Notre Dame and grab a hot chocolate at the café there before crossing the river to the island the cathedral is on. We go for a walk round the inside to try and warm up a bit and there is a full on service going on! Back outside I decide that if I don’t pull this ring out now I never will, I had been carrying it round with me since last night and she still hadn’t caught on I had it nor had she got it on her finger. I say something about spending the rest of our lives together and she says something agreeable (sorry I can’t remember exactly what was said, something to do with nerves) and then I pull the ring out and say “so that means you’ll wear this and marry me then”. She looks at the ring for what seemed like a long time and I say “is that a yes or no” I mean you do hear stories of girls saying no at the wrong time. She just looks at me say’s “yes, yes,yes,YES” and I put the ring on. The ring was a labour of love in itself, I had researched the 3 c’s of Diamonds and found a jeweler clear across the country (OK ~ this is especially funny for me. He said he traveled all the way across the country to get my ring. I couldn't believe it! I was so impressed so I asked "How long did that take you?" and he answered "3 hours". Wait, What? 3 hours? I could travel for 3 hours and not even leave my state! It would take 3 DAYS to go across our country!) from me who custom made the ring and setting and put the specific cut of diamond in it which I found out beforehand is Cassie’s favourite cut.

So I finally did it, I finally proposed to her in Paris on Valentine’s day albeit not how I wanted to. We leave back for England the next day and the rest of her time here is spent visiting family and friends, on the Friday I have to go to a meeting so I arrange for my parents to pick Cassie up and take her out for the day which they did, they took her to the beach! Still they had a great day and they got to know each other pretty well. (If you've never heard me talk about my in-laws let me just say they are the best. I haven't met anyone that has in-laws like mine. They really are cream of the crop and I am so lucky to have them! You hear so many horror stories of in-laws and we certainly don't always see eye to eye but we are respectful in our very very very few and limited disagreements. I think they know I love their son very much and they treat me with respect because of it. I think they have raised a truly remarkable man and therefore I have no choice but to respect them! They are wonderful people and I am just as in love with them as I am the Englishman!)

5 weeks after Cassie’s trip to England, we arrange to meet up in New York, Cassie’s favourite city (sorry all the rest of the cities), for the weekend. I fly out Friday afternoon and we meet up at JFK and catch a taxi to our hotel. Cassie shows me the sights and places she likes to visit as she used to live there, it’s a very touristy week-end and too soon we are back at JFK waiting for our flights home. In less than 3 weeks I will be flying to Florida to get married so back home I get ready to leave my life behind and start a new one in the US. The day comes and my dad picks me up from my house to take me to the airport, it’s a trip he will be making with my mum, sister, niece and brother-in-law the next day. I get to Jacksonville and here I am, England and everything I had is now behind me, my family are flying in the next day and everything they can fit in their cases that is mine is all I can bring with me.

It’s been a truly whirlwind 5 months in which time I have gone from confirmed bachelor with all the toys I wanted to this guy whose madly in love with this American, and only has what can be brought over in 2 suitcases and whatever room was in my families. For the record, you cannot fit Ducati motorcycles, bass guitars or awesome stereos in suitcases but you make choices in life and I definitely made the right one when I married this girl. (Awww, how sweet. And I concur!)

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  1. Yep, he difinitely made the right choice! I haved loved hearing your story from both points of view. You guys were made for each other!

  2. I LOVE this… what an amazing story!!

  3. Following you from the Terrific Thursday Blog Hop. I'd love it if you'd follow back!


  4. Hi, I have awarded to you 'The Versatile Blogger Award' Here is my link to the post:

    Karima xx


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