New Yorker Moments: Le Petit Proposal In The Big Apple
January 11th, 2013. It started out like any other Friday. I snoozed my iPhone alarm the requisite 3 times, then got up to get ready for work. Only to find this handwritten note scrawled onto a piece of scrap paper and taped to the wall:
Rolling my eyes, I thought nothing of it. Anytime I seem even a wee bit stressed at work, my “Dancing Romeo” (who I will call Mr. P), instructs me to “take a sick day”, which of course, I never do. But when I saw similar notes stuck to the bathroom mirror and computer, my suspicions arose. I texted Mr. P: “I have too much lined up today, I’m not taking a sick day.” To which he replies: “No, I insist.” This back and forth goes on for a bit until I finally cave in, but not before writing: “Seriously, if you wanted me to take the day off you should have told me last night. Pulling off stuff at the last minute is what we ladies call fear of commitment.”
I emailed my boss informing her of my “sudden sickness”, and decided if I was going to stay home, I might as well enjoy myself. Just as I settled in with my chihuahua and book, the buzzer rang. A delivery guy stood with breakfast and lunch, which I thought was a sweet gesture from Mr. P for making me take the day off.
An hour later, the buzzer rings again. I opened the door to find a man standing there with an ivory envelope. He hands it to me wordlessly and walks away, leaving me and my barking chihuahua with puzzled looks on our faces. Opening it, I find a quote from my favorite book, Le Petit Prince, along with a handful of stars:
My mind jumps into overdrive. Anniversary? No. Birthday? No. Poem In Your Pocket Day? No. The only logical explanation for a 30 year old girl commanded to take a sick day then, was: Engagement?!? Ahhhhhhhhh!!!
Not wanting to get my hopes up, I decide to keep communication strictly between myself and my bestie, so I text her details about the morning. Of course, we’re both freaking out now trying to figure out what the card could mean…is it a scavenger hunt?…a puzzle?…a confirmation that he read his own copy of The Little Prince that I gave him on one of our first dates?…when the doorbell rings again and the nameless man hands me another card and a small Tiffany box:
I’m sure I was fifty shades of flustered by this point, wondering if Mr. P was going to pop out of the elevator, what was in the box, was this THE MOMENT. I wait a bit, open the box, and find a little silver mirror…complimenting the quote on the card from the book.
Now, I’m not sure how many of you have read “The Little Prince”, (if you haven’t, do so immediately!), but to make a LONG proposal short, Mr. P had gone chapter by chapter through the entire book, and for the rest of the day had the nameless man deliver cards with quotes from each of the characters and corresponding gifts. Of course I had my tattered copy of the book out, so I could anticipate what would come next. I was, quite frankly, a nut job by 4pm when the nameless man came, instructing me that this would be the last time he would see me today. He handed me a map of Paris (ekkk!) and a card that read, “Your chariot will pick you up at 5pm to take you to your Prince.”
My friend and I were in severe panic mode as I proceeded to throw EVERYTHING I own out of the closet, not finding anything suitable for the big moment. After texting millions of photos back and forth, I finally decided that when in doubt, go with a LBD and a pink flower in the hair.
At 5pm on the dot, I went downstairs where a car and driver were waiting. It was raining (how quintessentially New York), and as we turned onto 5th Avenue and pulled up outside my favorite building in the world, The New York Public Library, the tears started flowing. Good thing it was raining.
A woman opened my car door and handed me one last envelope, with a quote from the ending of the book: “Here is my secret. It is very simple: It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.”
She led me into the library, up the stairs, and instructed me to turn left. As I turned, Mr. P was standing there. Walking towards him…
He said, “Thank you for taking the day off. While some things had to be a little last minute, others have been in the works for a very long time.” Well folks…you know the rest. He got down on one knee and as soon as the words “Will you marry me?” were all the way out of his mouth, I was screaming, “Absofrigginlutely!” Classy, I know.
And that, my friends, will forever be my favorite New Yorker Moment. At least until the wedding.