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Wednesday, May 20, 2009

The Trip to the Bank

Last week, Todd told me that we needed to go to the bank in Harford County to do some banking for his parents (who are in Florida).  He said that the bank only had evening hours on Tuesday and that we had to go Tuesday night.  This annoyed me because I really didn't want to go to the bank, and because Tuesday is my running night and I really wanted to run with Natalie.  Todd offered to pick me up from work in the Little Car (convertible), because I always love to ride in the little car.  I finally agreed, but I was still really irritated, especially when I had to email Natalie to cancel our running date.

So, Tuesday came.  Todd called me at work and asked to pick me up at 4:00.  I said NO.  I was already not interested in going to the bank, and I certainly wasn't going to be leaving work early to do so.  Why couldn't we just go on a weekend?  Why couldn't Todd go by himself?  Irritating.  I agreed to 4:30, and he came and picked me up right on time.

He started acting suspicious right away.  I mean, first, I put my work bag in the trunk and there was a bunch of clothes and stuff in there.  This was confusing, but I decided that it wasn't a huge deal.  Then, he started questioning my shoes - what shoes am I wearing?  WTF difference does it make?  We're going to the bank!  But, it was a beautiful day and we were riding in a convertible with the top down, and once I was actually out of work it was super nice to be outside, so I was happy.

We drove to who knows where, as I'm not familiar with Harford County, and then he pulled into a park & ride.  He told me we were waiting for someone.  Ohhh kayyy....  And that is when, in the little car, he pulled out a box with a ring in it and told me all kinds of nice things and asked me if I wanted to get married.  I had been adamant that if he ever proposed, I did not want an audience, and I wanted it to be just the two of us - NO ONE else, plus the little car rocks, so that is why he proposed there.

But I was confused.  We were at a park & ride.  Hm.  Then, guess what pulled in?  A van with a trailer with a hot air balloon basket on it!!  He was taking me up in a hot air balloon!!!!

I was super-excited, and very happy that we weren't going to the bank.*

We went down the road to Rocks State Park, where we got to know the other couple who were in the balloon, too.  They were grad students at the University of Delaware and they got engaged too!  At the park, we watched the balloon guys set up the balloon and get it ready.  Then, we hopped in and were off!

It was awesome.  We traveled from Rocks State Park north, over farm land, houses, a golf course (Geneva Farms), and more.  We saw deer and horses and dogs (the dogs were FREAKING out).  We stayed at 1000-1500 feet at first, and then dropped down some.  At one point, we touched down for just a second in a corn field and then went back up.  We pulled some leaves off of the top of a tree.  We saw our reflection in a pond.  At our highest point, we could see the Chesapeake Bay, Towson, and the mountains in Pennsylvania.  We could even see smoke stack or steam rising out of a power plant that was in New Jersey.  It was a gorgeous day for a ride in a balloon!!

It was interesting to watch the reaction to the people on the ground.  When the burners weren't on, it was very quiet, so you could basically hear everything down below.  Dogs were going nuts, horses were a little spooked and little kids were excited to wave at us.  People came out on their decks to see us fly by.  It was really cool. 

We touched down in a field next to a farm house just over the PA line.  We crashed a little into some bushes, but we were fine and it wasn't bad.  The folks who owned the property came out and we shared a champagne toast at sunset.  Apparently, the tradition of a champagne toast and ballooning started in the 1700s in France, where ballooning started.  In order to keep farmers from being upset that a flying "demon" had landed on their property, the balloon operators (ballooners?  balloonists?) would bring champagne on board and offer it to the property owners.  This was very very cool.  Unfortunately, it was getting to be about 8:30pm and I hadn't eaten since lunch and I'd drank 2 glasses of champagne.  So, I was pretty tipsy pretty fast.

We went back to our car and headed home.  I was so tired!  We ended up sharing carryout pasta from Genova's for dinner at home at almost 10pm, which was absolutely perfect.  

What a wonderful evening!  Todd really got me, I had no idea what he'd had planned.  And yes, it's real this time, not an April Fools prank.  The only bad thing is that the ring has to be sent back and resized down, since when I was asked what my ring size was, I apparently got it wrong.  By a lot.  Hooray for skinny fingers, but sad because I have to say goodbye to my beautiful ring for as long as two weeks (the jeweler is in Houston).  Totally my fault.

Thanks to everyone who already sent Facebook congratulations!  :)

* In fact, his parents have been asking us to go to the bank for like 8 months, so the worst part of this story is that we STILL haven't gone to the bank.

At the Park & Ride:
From 2009 Hot Air Balloon Best Of

At Rocks State Park:
From 2009 Hot Air Balloon Best Of

Setting up the balloon:
From 2009 Hot Air Balloon Best Of

Firing it up!
From 2009 Hot Air Balloon Best Of

All set up!
From 2009 Hot Air Balloon Best Of

Above Geneva Farms Golf Club
From 2009 Hot Air Balloon Best Of

Us on the Balloon!
From 2009 Hot Air Balloon Best Of

From 2009 Hot Air Balloon Best Of

Grapes from Fiore Winery
From 2009 Hot Air Balloon Best Of

Our reflection in a pond
From 2009 Hot Air Balloon Best Of

After landing
From 2009 Hot Air Balloon Best Of

That's me and my fiance...
From 2009 Hot Air Balloon Best Of

There's the ring, because I know people want to see it. The leaves I'm holding are ones that we pulled off of the top of a tree. The ring is on my middle finger for now since it's too big and it would suck to lose it.
From 2009 Hot Air Balloon Best Of

2009 Hot Air Balloon Best Of

And if you've read this far, I've got an awesome link for you that is only kinda sorta related to the topic of this post.  


Jenny said...

Congratulations! What wonderful news! And what a great way to propose!

Erika Truffer said...

Yay!!!!! Awesome! So happy for you two!!!! Congrats!

V- said...

I am so happy for you two...congratulations! And tell Todd I said "Well done!" V-

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