An Averagely Long Engagement

This weekend Sam and I celebrated our engagement anniversary. But sadly, except to go to work on Saturday, I’ve been so struck down with a terrible cold that I’ve been barely able to drag myself out of bed for the past 4 days. We haven’t been able to celebrate the way that we would have wanted to, but instead Sam has been feeding me goodness, vitamins and handing me tissues. 

He also kindly wrote this blog post for me, detailing his side of popping the question. My story has already been told, so it’s only fair that he gets his chance. 

Take it away, Sam! 
at great fosters
Having a good time at Great Fosters, unaware that soon we’d be engaged.

Amanda agreed to be my wife a year ago yesterday so I thought I would share some memories of that brilliant day.To be honest, and not to hoot my own horn, but I knew she was going to say yes. I knew this because she had waged a low-level intimidation campaign against me for the previous year, including tactics such as sending me text messages using emoticons and question marks. Subtle, right? I didn’t need pressuring: I knew I wanted her to be my wife, I just wanted it to be as perfect as possible, so to do this I needed to throw her off the scent…

Amanda wanted to wear her grandma’s engagement ring so, thanks to her Mum, I had this shipped across from the US in secret. The weekend before Valentine’s Day I booked us a room at a swish hotel in Surrey called Great Fosters. As a jobbing actor, my hotel budget can usually only stretch as far a Travelodge, but we went all-out on this one and got a suite that was bigger (and nicer) than our flat. Amanda sensed that the game was afoot, so how could I keep it as a surprise?

Whenever we go away Amanda insists on doing all the packing, even though I believe my packing skills are unrivalled. I knew that if I tried to sneak the ring into our luggage that she would find it, like a bloodhound on a mission. There was only one place I knew she wouldn’t look: in my dirty, smelly walking boots! I secured the ring at the toe-end of my left boot – it was in a box though, don’t worry, I’m not that gross – and she went nowhere near it. When we unpacked and she saw no ring I saw a moment of dismay flash over her face, but only for a second because we were still together in this amazing place.

As we had walked the grounds in the afternoon I had spotted the perfect place to do the deed: on a beautiful wooden bridge by a lake at the back of the hotel. Before dinner I lured her outside under the pretence of wanting to take a moonlit photo of the hotel. She wasn’t happy. In fact she was fairly grumpy about it because it was freezing.

That’s when I did it – surprise! 

Even though I was confident of a positive response, I was so, so nervous before asking her. It’s all a blur now, but apparently I got all serious, gripping her by her elbows and asked her straight out. I’m not even sure if she actually said yes, all I can remember is a phenomenon we now refer to as The Cry Bomb: as soon as the words came out of my mouth, Amanda exploded into tears. I’ve never seen anything like it. It was amazing!

It was a brilliant moment that I’ll never forget. We went for dinner afterwards and I announced our news to our fellow guests in the restaurant, much to Amanda’s embarrassment. They whooped, applauded and toasted us!

What a night. Thanks for saying yes, Amanda!

immediately engagement
Blurry excited selfie almost immediately after. 

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