Published: March 13th 2009January 1st 2009
Do you have a favourite place?
Somewhere that is serene and calm and makes you want to just go there and hang out with nothing but the view and your thoughts? I do. It's Sugarloaf rock, in Dunsborough. Named after it's counterpart in Brazil perhaps, it just sits alone in the water, with no path but swimming a current to reach it. I'm happy to sit back and gaze at it, this tooth of Neptune that just waits as time passes. The tide comes in, the tide goes out, and through it all Sugarloaf rock exists. It makes me feel at peace.
Beside it is another rock, and if you clamber down the hill of scree and pebbles, you can climb that hill, and discover another one. Climb the second one, and there's a third. There is a chain of 5 or 6 rocks, and once, we climbed all the way to the end and saw dolphins. A definite reward for our efforts. There is a rope for those who like to rockfish, you tie yourself to it in case of freak king waves. This time though, we just went to gaze, or so I thought.
Danilo suggested taking
a trip to Sugarloaf for sunset. We left everyone else at the cabin, prepping for our New Years party, and took off, me with my camera and tripod stowed in a bag. Danilo packed up the picnic basket so we could relax and eat while watching one of nature's best gifts. It was nice to be alone together, as my visit home had been filled with whirlwind visits to friends and such, and there hadn't been much time to just 'be'.
We clambered down that rocky hill, to our favourite lookout spot. Perhaps ruining other people's pictures of the sunset, but we were too self absorbed to really care. I snapped away, different angles of the rocks, the light, changing lenses, even working with the timer and getting some shots of us together. We talked while this was happening, but I was in my camera happy zone and not really paying attention to any mood changes beside me. I sat down on possibly the pointiest rock in existence, but we weren't spoilt for choice, and Danilo poured me some wine.
Wine at sunset, sitting at Sugarloaf Rock in the summertime. What could possibly have made that moment better.
Perhaps it was something in his manner, but I looked at Danilo then, and he stared back. He said 'Babe, there's something I need to ask you....' and my heart beat a little faster. I had hoped, suspected, dismissed, supspected and and dismissed again, the idea that what was happening was going to happen then, and then it did. 'Will you marry me?'
I wasn't sure if I was awake or dreaming, or in a coma in hospital sopmewhere. My hands were shaking, and my eyes were pricking with the beginnings of tears. I asked him 'Are you really asking me?...' He nodded, said 'yes', and then it was my turn.
We have been together for 4 years, and we are super compatible. We rarely argue, and never fight. I sulk, he is patient, I get over it and things are great again. He's generous to a fault, has a smile that lights up his eyes and my heart, and I would be crazy not to want to marry this man.
I think those things now, but at the time I was just a bundle of humming energy. My hands were still shaking, and my heart was
thumping like African bongo drums. I don't think there was really a clear or coherent thought in my head at that point.
I ended up on my knees, looking up at him and i threw my arms around him and said 'Yes!'. I also said some lame phrase after that which will not be repeated here, and future generations will never have to know how corny I was in my acceptance of Danilo's proposal of marriage. (I may have to edit in that he got down on one knee like he was supposed
to, and didn't
tell everyone I could have given the news to his intentions beforehand either).
As you can see, once over the initial shock and rapture, I started making comparisons to what Danilo did, and what he should have done because of his massive psychic ability to know exactly what I wanted him to do...
On the drive back to the chalet, I kept staring at my hand and back at him, sending messages to friends who weren't with us and generally being in the 'OH MY GOD I'M GETTING MARRIED!' headspace. We even had a gift from the heavens, well, heavenly bodies
anyways. Venus was shining bright, and was lined up directly with the moon. A special sky just for us (and the other 21 million people in Australia).
When you're going out with someone, you tend to wonder about your future together, thinking is this the person i'll be spending the rest of my life with? Thoughts of children and houses and careers are just vague formations beyond the whole 'will we get married?' veil. Well, I'd like to share with yout a little fact. Once you're engaged, those things come into full focus.
Where before I was thinking about making hundreds of little babies and winning lotto and having that dream mansion in the sky (and if you listen to Louis CK, wiping your bum with live rabbits!), and seeling a bestseller and never having to work again, living off of royalties and figurines...now my train of thought is quite altered from that...and far too realistic for my liking. Now i think about interest rates and loans and finding work when i get back and saving money (ye gods) and where to buy property and how much will the wedding cost and how many kids did you say you wanted?
and things like that. Mansion in the sky please!
We finally got back to the chalet - rejecting the idea of pretending like nothing had changed and that Danilo had chickened out at the last minute...in hindsight I wish we'd gone through with it. I walked through the door and the girls shouted Happy......New Year! just in case, and then I flashed the ring and it was all party party again. Since it was New Years Eve we did have a party, eating the fish we'd (Danilo had) caught that morning. They had even decorated the house with steamers, putting a giant pink heart in our bedroom.
I had to recap the story for them, and they had to tell me their story of Danilo's plans. He even took my parents and my brother out to dinner the night I arrived, and told them of his intentions (my mum's friends get goosebumps and declare that yes, she should give me to him because he sounds like a nice man whenever she tells them that story).
My brother was the only one who twigged, saying that you don't take a woman's family out to dinner unless
you have something to say. My mum and dad thought it was a thankyou for letting Danilo spend weeks and weeks painting the house (lol) and for the first time...ever? :) my mum was lost for words. Dad apparently went whiter than his shirt (white) and I'm guessing there was a period of adjustment for everyone.
They set off for the airport to get me, and everybody kept hush hush for the next 2 weeks!
I scarcely believe it myself! ]
It just goes to show that my family and friends are just a bunch of liars really.
There are more photos below