Erica and Jimmy
How We Met – bride
After finishing graduate school at Clemson University in May 2013, I took a job and moved to Boston from South Carolina without knowing anyone. Eager to experience the city life and meet new people, one of the first things I did was join the New England Clemson Alumni Club, which hosts “watch parties” for each of the Clemson football games throughout the fall. During the second game of the year, I was introduced to Jimmy, who is from Massachusetts but went down to Clemson for college. We were both trying to play it cool as our group hung out all day and bar hopped around Boston, but we secretly had our eyes on each other the whole time.
While I was in the bathroom with one of my shorter friends that night, she commented on Jimmy saying, “that guy in the white hat is pretty cute.” Always one to be looking for guys who are actually taller than me, I immediately proclaimed, “you can’t have him- he’s tall and he’s mine!” Little did I know, I was right! After playing in a softball league together and hanging out a few more times, we eventually made it official and the rest is history!
How He Asked – groom
Early on in our relationship, Erica and I visited Nantucket together, for both of our first visits to the island. We had such a blast there, and it instantly became a special place for us. Although we love traveling to new places and experiencing new things, Nantucket has always been our favorite place to go as a couple. I knew that Erica would not have wanted a big production or a lot of people around when I proposed, so I wanted to do something simple and meaningful to us in a special place. For Labor Day Weekend in 2015, I decided to surprise her by booking a trip for the two of us to Nantucket for one last getaway before the summer was over. Some of Erica’s favorite things are sunsets, so my original plan was to pop the question on the second night of the trip when we had time to get over to the most popular sunset spot on the western side of the island.
Things changed though, as we ended up with some extra time before our dinner reservation on the first night, and Erica suggested we go by the store to grab a bottle of wine and watch the sunset. Things started to line up nicely when we walked into the store and spotted a blue and white striped bottle of Chandon that Erica had been looking for that summer. While making our purchase, we started chatting with the store owner about watching the sunset, and she told us that instead of the popular spot on the other side of the island, we should go to the close-by Steps Beach to get away from the crowd and have an even better view. We realized that it was too far to walk before dinner, but a nice group of women overheard us and told us to pile in their car and they would give us a ride over. We arrived and walked out to a beautiful view of the beach with the sun starting to go down over the water. Things were working out way too well, and I knew this had to be the time.
I guided Erica down to the end of the beach away from everybody else so we would have some privacy, and we started to settle down on a spot in the sand. Like we had done on a previous trip, I had brought our selfie stick to mount in the sand and hold a phone to take a time-lapse video as the sun went down. Erica was excited to get one of these videos while we were in Nantucket, so she eagerly helped me set her phone up in just the right spot. After we started the video, Erica wanted to pop the champagne, but I suggested that instead we walk out in front of the phone and do something cool so that this sunset video would be a little different than the other one we had taken. She agreed, and champagne in hand, I led her out into the view of the camera and then stopped and turned towards her. Everything that I had rehearsed over and over in my head disappeared from my mind, but somehow I was able to get across how special she was to me and how much she had changed my life. We both had tears in our eyes as I dropped to one knee and asked her to marry me, and she said yes!
We were so excited and were celebrating together, and a woman who was walking down the beach noticed and came over to congratulate us and take a picture for us. While still in the view of the video, we then finally popped the champagne and toasted to each other. After walking back towards our belongings, we heard someone yell “congratulations!” from a house up on the cliff and look to see a group of people cheering for us. Next thing we know, they were all making their way down the stairs to come celebrate with us!
It turned out that it was a family who had been watching the whole thing, and the grandfather even brought down another bottle of champagne and made a toast to us, telling us to come back and meet there again in ten years. We finally made it to dinner where we were on cloud nine, and eventually had to finish everything back in our room so we could go call our families. It all worked out perfectly, and it made it even more special to see the outpouring of love and congratulations from so many strangers throughout the evening!