Anne and Brett
How We Met
I can still remember the Friday afternoon when I was ‘bumbling’ and matched with Brett, thinking what a coincidence it was, that a redhead (and all of the obvious fiery traits that come with the hair) and a firefighter should meet like this. Funnily enough, that was put right to the test when he made a comment about redheads having more fun, and I showed him a little ginger sass. It was almost like the perfect digital meet-cute!
We quickly started talking for hours every evening in lieu of meetings – unfortunately I was living in Los Angeles at the time, and Brett was working in San Diego, it’s a miracle he even stuck with it, given his deep dislike of anything LA related (typical San Diegan)! After meeting him for the first time, I quickly realised what a gentleman he was and how relaxed we were together.When he finally asked me to come on a family trip to Catalina, and I met all the fabulous people in his family, I knew that I would fit right in.
It was like a perfect fit and surely enough, we became inseparable, spending our precious weekends together. We have been on more adventures than I can count, and he has shown me so many new things in life. Coming from Germany, everything in San Diego was new for me, and we loved exploring the world together; hiking, paddle boarding, snorkelling, fishing, and most importantly eating and drinking. Food and wine are our weakness. I cannot thank him enough for introducing me to fish tacos. My life would not be the same without them.
I left LA and now call San Diego my home – there’s not better place to be. Surrounded by the ocean, the mountains and the countless wineries in close proximity, we’ve found the perfect place for many more adventures to come.
How He Asked
I’m from Germany and had to return home for personal reasons late in the summer of 2017. Brett and I knew we would not see each other for a while and this is a particular busy time for firefighters in California as it is the middle of fire season. Brett traveled North to assist with the many fires around the Bay Area, but having not seen him for two months, I could not wait to be reunited with him.
We booked a flight for him to come to Europe, and I was ecstatic about the many things I could plan for us to do during his trip. Some of Brett’s relatives are Italian, a country he had never visited before. I knew this would be my chance to take him to Italy for the first time and could not have been more excited about the prospect of discovering this country with him.
Knowing we only had a few days for a short trip to Italy, I recommended we should visit Verona and Venice, two magical cities. When Brett arrived at the airport, I could not help but be overjoyed and excited about our days head.
Driving through Austria and then coming into Italy, I could tell his anticipation was rising from second to second. I had previously booked a night in a beautiful Italian villa located between Verona and Lake Garda. It turned out, we were the only guests that night and we loved every second of it. Exploring the grounds was simply fantastic, the autumn sun was shining through the vineyards, the leaves were golden and air crisp.
The city of Verona is famous, not only for the marvellous food and the unbelievable arena, but it is well known to many as the setting for the star-crossed lovers Romeo and Juliet. Roaming the countless alleys, enjoying our delicious gelato and sipping on a glass of wine on the streets, it did not take us long to fall in love with this place.
The next day, we had to get up early to drive to Venice. I had been to Venice once before with my parents, and was anxious to start our day of exploring. We checked into our amazing waterfront hotel and wasted no time to put our walking shoes on and to head out. And so we began our way through the labyrinth of streets in Venice. Making our way to Piazza San Marco, we stopped to admire the architecture, the quirky corners of the city, and the charming gondolas.
We finally arrived at St. Mark’s square and were both in awe. I was so enamoured with the site in front of me, that at first I did not see that Brett had stopped to talk to one of the photographers scattered around the center of the city offering (overly)high-priced photography services.
Trying to avoid this common tourist trap, I urged Brett to get going – but all of a sudden I found him standing in front of me, pulling a small box out of his pocket. Not really knowing what was going on, I looked over to the photographer, who was already busy capturing the moment. Seconds later, Brett had dropped down on one knee. I don’t remember a lot of what he was saying – and later Brett admitted that he too, had little recollection of what he said exactly.
The only thing we could both remember clearly, is that he asked me to spend the rest of our lives together and to be his wife – to which I responded with the biggest smile and definitive YES!
It was then that we both noticed that a crowd of people had formed around us, cheering and clapping and congratulating us. It was the most special moment of our lives. Even though it was just between the two of us, it also felt like we shared it with the whole world. Carlo, the photographer, captured every moment of it so luckily, we have it all on camera. Venice will always have a special place in our hearts, and it’s a memory we will never forget.