Happy Labour Day and Happy Vegan Mofo! I just want to give a shout out to the people heading over to demonstrate at Marineland today. I can’t be there, but I support you 100%. Thank you to Marineland Animal Defense for their important work on this.
Now, on with the Vegan MoFoing.
This story is probably more for me than for you.
Imagine I’m 90, and sitting by the solar electric fireplace, maybe a nuclear fission tube, or some futuristic equivalent. I’m wearing a sweater that I knit out of rescued space cat hair or something, and I want to tell you a story of how I your great great great grandfather proposed to me. Back when there weren’t any self-driving cars or holographic skype calls. A Cat is President of the Internet. You get the idea.
Note: If you want to escape the sappy lovey engagement story bits, and look at vegan food porn, there are
some lots of photos at the bottom of this post from our delicious engagement dinner at Candle 79.
So on with the story.
JC and I have been engaged since December 2011. We met at the beginning of the year, though the internet (where I find everything I love), and during that year fell madly in love, in as much as logical robot computer people can fall in love (but apparently it’s a lot since both of us have secretly mushy squishy romantic insides.)
He very innocently asked me the month before if I wanted to go away anywhere in December, and we decided to go to New York City. We wanted to eat, and explore, and have a lovely time, what better place then a city that’s close enough to visit easily, but far enough that it’s a completely different scene.
Later, I found out that he mentioned to his mother before we left that there was a chance we’d be engaged by the time we got back. And I had no idea. What a sneaky fellow.
We did go to New York City, and had a lovely time, and ate amazing food at so many beautiful and delicious places. I showed him some of my favourite museums and galleries. We explored new places together. We saw the city. Fell in love a little bit more. It was wonderful. It was already a perfect trip.
But wait… there’s more. My sweet human was plotting something. We had planned to go up to one of my favourite spots in New York City – The Empire State Building. I REALLY like heights and the view from up high, so I was excited. JC is not a fan of heights at all – so, he seemed a little nervous – but of course I know how he feels about heights.
I was flitting around on the platform taking pictures from every possible angle around the top of the building, JC was a few feet away from the edge most of the time.
As I’m writing this, it is funny to me the moments I remember so vividly now, a year or so later, and it makes me smile. At one point we got to talking about fears and heights and I told him how normal and logical I thought it was to be afraid of heights, and how I was the weirdo. And I remember how his eyes sparkled at that.
Once again, I trotted off and away, close to the edge, grabbing one of the clear spaces before someone else took it, and parked myself there for a while. JC came up behind me and hugged me while I took photos, put his head on my shoulder, and whispered beautiful sentimental sweet things into my ear. The photos I was taking as he spoke still take me back to that moment with clarity.
There was no stereotypical bended knee pose (thank you) or raucous coordinated dance number (double thank you.) I didn’t realize what was happening until it happened. My camera can attest to that because slowly the photos I was taking were at an angle (as you can see above).
When those four little words appeared – “will you marry me?” I think my heart stopped. Or at least skipped a beat. Almost immediately it felt like my heart was singing love songs & my brain was working at a hundred miles a minute.
Is this happening? What does that question mean? Do I want to marry ever? What about the institution of marriage? Do I want to be a part of that? Am I really thinking about this right now? Really?! And finally… the realization that this wasn’t a difficult decision at all. The brain and heart aligned and agreed.
It felt like several minutes had passed (even though I’m pretty sure it was merely seconds) before my brain would construct an appropriate affirmative response and send it to my lips. My eyes welled up. Big yes. Big big yes. Big hugs. Big Kisses. In that moment we were the only two people up there, looking at the sunset, together.
Sometimes I still feel that weird and wonderful cone of silence (Get Smart anyone?) around us. Team JC and MeShell against and with the world. Go team.
But how do you celebrate an Engagement if you are two vegans in love on vacation in New York City? Well, if you are us, one of the things you decide to do is go out for an amazing dinner at Candle 79.
When we got there everything seemed extra special – like they knew (…they didn’t, they’re just great.) They brought us cute little amuse bouche’s, and I still don’t remember what was in them other than what I can see here:
I ordered the Walnut-crusted seitan with sauteed porchini mushrooms, shallots, brussels sprouts, squash puree, mustard -beluga lentil sauce topped with an apple salad. They’ve changed their menu since, but it was a lovely dish.
JC had the Mustard-Ginger Tempeh with a sweet potato purée, sautéed trumpet royale mushrooms, brussels sprouts, lentils, brown rice, sunflower seeds, apple salad, cranberry-chipotle coulis.
And together, JC and I discovered the potential of a vegan cannoli. Or rather, he ordered it, I ordered something else, but still ate half of his dessert. It’s like a metaphor for life or something (Jokes. Just Jokes. I hope.)
A week or so ago, we were sitting in the very same spot (they were kind enough to accommodate my romantic fiance’s OpenTable note request.) We sat in our little corner by the front window, with that same feeling, just the two of us. Delicious food, and The Future.
If you for whatever reason want to read more vegan proposal stories – Rose Pedals Vegan Weddings has you covered with their section on real vegan proposals. All of them are sweet and adorable, and suddenly while engaged I found myself pouring over other people’s experiences, wondering how they felt, what they thought.
Tomorrow… let’s talk engagement parties.