Mana and Karlo
How We Met
Karlo and I met while working at Novartis in the San Francisco Bay area. The spark was instant. No one should look that good in a button-down-shirt-and-sweater-combo. During those early days on the west coast, he had told me that when he would eventually propose to someone, he’d just throw the ring and say, “Down?”
When the time came for us to move on in our careers, we headed to the east coast, and dated long distance while I pursued graduate school on Long Island, and he in Boston. I later moved to Boston, and we adopted a large, grumpy kitty, and began building a happy life together.
How He Asked
Shortly after I moved to Boston, we befriended a photographer and her boyfriend, who was also in graduate school. Last summer, our friend excitedly invited us to visit Martha’s Vineyard with them for a special day celebrating her boyfriend’s thesis proposal. We enthusiastically agreed, looking forward to the long-awaited “proposal celebration”. Little did I know, this was all orchestrated by Karlo, who wanted to propose by a lighthouse – a special symbol of love and our relationship.
We had a beautiful day in Martha’s Vineyard. We stopped for lunch, coffee, wine, and spent the day just meandering through the quaint streets, occasionally posing for photos, at our friend’s behest. She kept telling us about a beautiful lighthouse in Edgartown that she wanted to take portraits at, so we agreed to work our way there by sunset.
Everyone seemed to be giddy and incredibly high-energy as we walked down to the shore. Our friend set the shot and told us to walk to the lighthouse, and just act natural. So we did. I couldn’t help but feel that this location would have been perfect for a proposal, but as we stood by the lighthouse, Karlo took my hands, and told me that he’d loved me since the day we first met. He said, “I’m so lucky to be able to be dating you, and I’m so lucky to have friends that would trick you.” That’s when I knew the proposal was happening.
In the shadow of the Edgartown lighthouse, from one coast to the other, he took a knee and said, “Mana Harvey Chandhok, I love you. I’ll always love you forever. I want to marry you. I want to grow old with you. I want to start a family with you. And I want you to know that. So, knowing all of that, knowing how much I want to marry you, I want to ask you something I should have asked a long time ago. Something that I actually told you right around the time we first met. I’m yours forever. Down?”
And I said yes. I will be saying yes to a lifetime of love a year later!