Kristi and Brian

How We Met:Brian and I met at a concert festival in Pennsylvania. He’s from Baltimore and I’m from the Jersey Shore. We were staying at the same hotel for the weekend and he and his friends had the room directly next to my best friend and I. We all hit it off and had a great time together all weekend. When it came time to say goodbye, we knocked on their door and Brian answered all grumpy (my first hint he wasn’t a morning person.) I decided he was a bit rude and thought “Ah, well, he’s still pretty cute.”

The next day, he texted me to see how I was and ended up apologizing for the rudeness. He explained that he’s terribly grumpy in the morning. I forgave him and we texted and spoke on the phone every day for weeks until finally, we couldn’t deal with not hanging out. We organized a visit for Brian to spend a weekend in NJ and the rest is history.. FF to me living in Baltimore and us planning our first real vacation together.

How He Asked: We went to St. Thomas in the USVI to spend a week with his parents at their time share. I was so nervous because even though I know his parents, it was going to be a week in close quarters and I knew we would get to know each other better. His parents were so much fun and all week, his dad kept hinting that he hopes I stick around and making silly jokes of that sort.

We took a trip to the British Virgin Island of Jost Van Dyke and I got my first passport stamp, I got to go shopping with his mom, learn the history of the islands from his dad, and hear stories from all of his parents adventures. All I could think about was how much I hoped that would be us someday.

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As vacation came to a close, on the last day, we took a trip to Coki beach. For the entire trip, the water was a shade of crystal blue I’d only ever dreamed of seeing. I was almost in tears thinking of having to leave this place but I got over it and enjoyed the beautiful day. We fed tropical fish, snorkeled, searched for sea glass and other treasures, and just soaked up every bit of sun possible knowing that the next morning, we would be leaving the most beautiful place on earth.

That night, Brian thought it would be fun to go out to a fancy dinner, so we picked a restaurant called The Banana Tree. It was among the remains of a 400 year old Danish fort on the island, used as a lookout for enemy ships. We’re both history nerds so this was super exciting. We had an amazing dinner with the best view of the water, the other islands, and twinkling lights from all the houses among the hills. We shared a desert and took a taxi back to our resort.

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We decided to take a walk down to the beach and Brian told his parents to meet us downstairs for drinks for our last night of the trip. I thought nothing of it because we had been doing things like that all along. We went down to the restaurant on the water and walked down onto the beach to get a good look at the view I would hold in my heart forever.

Brian started telling me all of the things he loved about me and how much he enjoyed our trip. He had a bag with him and he asked if I wanted to see what was inside. Of course I said yes so he reached in and pulled out a doll. This doll was one I had been looking at both times we went into town because it was a “jumbie” doll.

I searched for almost our whole vacation, to no avail, for a jumbie doll. This was because when we visited Salem, MA last fall, we learned about the legend of jumbies from our ghost tour guide and I’m very seriously into the supernatural. I really wanted something representing two of our adventures together but the only doll we saw was so expensive that I decided to let it go. I was so excited about it and touched by his meaningful gesture and he was so happy to give me the doll.

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We stood on the beach staring off into the water and enjoying the view and we talked about how the tree only a few yards away from us was the tree where his parents renewed their vows and how special this place was to them and their family. He started to seem a bit shaky and held my hands in his. The last thing I remember him saying was “We always talk about forever and I’ve known it was going to be forever since the day I met you..” and he dropped to one knee and asked me if I would officially be his wife. I immediately started crying tears of joy.

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