Victoria and Zachariy
How We Met
Our story began in June 2013 at a dinner with all of our coworkers. We had both heard so much about each other from everyone else at work for the past two months after Zach joined our team. All everyone could keep saying is how absolutely perfect we were for each other. Needless to say, when our manager arranged for a team dinner one night, I was very excited to finally meet Zach. When we all got to dinner, the hostess showed us to our table and Zach strategically sat himself next to me. Not only was it my first time meeting Zach but it was his first time being introduced to a lot of the people who were at the dinner. Since he had only recently joined our team, a handful of us were strangers to him.
To say that I was less than impressed with him would be an understatement – he was good looking, yes, but he was very shy and quiet. In almost every essence, he was the complete opposite of me. While my voice could be heard throughout the entire dinner catching up with everyone, he was sitting next to me as silent as could be. In fact, Zach ordered a bottle of wine and offered a glass to everyone at the table. I politely declined a glass of wine from his bottle, however I proceeded to order a single glass of that exact same wine on my own from the waiter. Dinner came to an end and we all parted ways and the next day I messaged my manager asking her how she could possibly ever imagine Zach and I together!?
Fast forward to three months later and a coworker of mine asked if I could cover her Friday evening shift. I agreed knowing that Friday nights are usually slow and the time would pass by quickly and I would still be able to go out after work. As I walk into the store I see who the manager on duty is for that day and quickly regret my decision of covering the shift. Zach was the covering manager for the night so I was going to be spending the night with him. We politely said “Hi” to each other and began performing our responsibilities for the night. As the night went by, Zach began opening up and talking more. I began to realize how much we had in common – he graduated with a degree that I was currently studying for, we both enjoyed working out, we both liked cars and watching Top Gear, and we both loved spicy food and traveling. As the night came to a close I realized that maybe everyone was right – maybe we would be pretty good together. He was sweet, smart, polite, and very willing to help others.
That night after work we chatted for a bit in the parking lot before parting ways. When I got home, I messaged him and since then not a day has gone by without us talking to each other. We would spend all day messaging each other back and forth getting to know each other. As time went on I really started falling for him. I went on a long weekend trip to Ireland a few months into us talking with my best friend and I remember sitting on the floor of the hostel telling my best friend how I missed talking to him and I wanted to see him and that I thought it was all so crazy – but I really could see myself falling happily in love with him.
Seeing as I was still in college while working part-time and he was working full time it was challenging to find time to see each other. This is where Zach got creative – sometimes he would wait in the parking lot at my job until my shift ended and take me out to dinner or to the movies right after just to see me for an hour or two. We continued talking and hanging out for a couple of months and then one night I was back home by the beach in New Jersey and there was a big snow storm. I had an oncology final that week but all my notes were at Rutgers University. Zach knew I had the exam so next thing I knew he called me and said that he was driving down to pick me up and needed my address. As preposterous as it was, I was very grateful and excited to see him! That night I realized how utterly amazing he is and I knew that from then on it would be him and I traveling the world together and navigating our way through life together.
How He Asked
Zach and I were on a Christmas Market River cruise for a week from Basel, Switzerland to Amsterdam, Netherlands with my parents and eight other parents of very close family friends. We had stops every day throughout France, Germany and the Netherlands and finally we docked one last time in Amsterdam. Our group of twelve extended the trip and planned to stay in Amsterdam for two nights to tour the city. The morning we docked, we all disembarked the ship and dropped our bags off at the hotel so that we could do a walking tour of the city that morning. On the walking tour, Zach told me that he had made 3:30 reservations at a coffee shop he had heard of to celebrate our three year anniversary that had passed while we were on the cruise. Since we were unable to celebrate it just us on the ship, Zach said he wanted to do something cute and special for us. As the walking tour came to an end, I suggested Zach and I go back to the hotel to finish checking in and bring our bags to the room and then head out for the reservations he made. We said goodbye to our group and began to make our way to the hotel.
After grabbing a quick lunch, we got to the hotel and freshened up a bit in the room and put our coats back on to head back outside. Zach began to lead our walk to the coffee shop which was going to take about 20 minutes. We were snapping photos of the city on the way, just chatting about our favorite highlights of the trip so far and how we had absolutely no desire to go home. We made a final turn and walked a few blocks until we got to the coffee shop. We were 15 minutes early, but I said to Zach that I am sure they would still be able to seat us for a 3:30 reservation. He insisted we wait until 3:30 so he suggested walking a few more blocks. I agreed and after two blocks I stopped and looked at him and told him I had to use the restroom. We then turned around and walked back to the cafe and slipped inside. I asked him if he could sit at the table now and he begrudgingly said “No.” Then I asked him if he could simply get me a coffee to go – we had been up since early in the morning and after all he had said about this coffee shop I wanted to at least try their coffee!
I used the restroom and came out to see Zach standing there empty handed – no coffee to be seen. I asked him if he was still waiting for it and he said he never ordered it. Well, with this I began to get a little annoyed – we walked across the city for coffee and now I was being refused coffee. I asked him if I could at least get a bottle of water and again, he said “No.” He said lets go outside and walk around a bit more – then we can stop back in. I unenthusiastically agreed and outside we went. We walked a bit and Zach got me laughing again and then he looked at me and said “Hey – lets go take a selfie on that bridge!” I laughed because 1.) Zach never uses the word ‘selfie’ and 2.) he never suggests taking photos. I thought maybe he was trying to make it up to me that I didn’t get a coffee. We walked over to a bridge, situated ourselves right in the middle and he held up his phone and snapped a few photos (in majority of which I am laughing at the situation). He slipped his phone in his pocket and the next thing I knew he grabbed my hands, turned me toward him and got down on one knee.
I was absolutely astonished. I looked at him and couldn’t believe what was happening. He began telling me how much he loved me, and how he doesn’t want to live his life with anyone else by his side. I could barely process everything that was going on. He then took the ring out, opened the box and asked me if I would marry him and of course I said “Yes!!” with tears in my eyes and a huge smile on my face.
It was an utterly unbelievable moment – I had said yes to spend the rest of my life with the man of my dreams. The man I want to see the world with, who makes me happier than ever and is the reason I feel like I can overcome anything in life wanted to be with me forever. After a few moments of celebration, people around clapping and snapping pictures a woman came over to us and introduced herself to me. Sylvia let me know that Zach had arranged for a photographer to be there during the proposal and he arranged for him and I to walk around Amsterdam for an hour to take more photos!
We walked around the city to take photos together in various places, almost got hit by a bicycle or two and although I may not have gotten my coffee that afternoon, I did get asked to stand by the man that I love for the rest of our lives and nothing beats that.