Fairytale of Hong Kong

Scenario One: How Ike was supposed to propose

I told Ike I planned to take him to Liberty Private Works for dinner to celebrate his birthday. He had told me that coincidentally he was trying to book the same restaurant for our one year anniversary too. Great minds! Apparently over dinner, in a rather traditional and non-Ike manner, Ike had planned to propose.

We never ended up going to LPW. First Ike fell ill, then I came back from Singapore with the flu and basically we canceled the reservation and haven’t been to LPW yet!

Scenario Two: Project Proposal entre foodies

I love to cook. Ike loves to cook. His entire family loves to cook. Ike collected all his family recipes in random formats like cutouts, scribbled notes and what not. He planned to retype them all out and print a book of these recipes. Within these would be his mom’s recipe for matrimonial cake – a page he cheekily intended to title “jups and Ike’s matrimonial cake”. He would carve out a hole in the next several pages and nestle the ring there. It would have taken him a good few months to get the project done. Which means it would have happened well into the new year. I told him I wish he had! Isn’t it the most brilliant of marriage proposal ideas?!

How I imagined Ike would propose

I wasn’t expecting Ike to propose for a long time but ever since we moved into our “penthouse”, I couldn’t think of a more beautiful place to propose than our own rooftop. I imagined he would prepare me a six course meal the way he did for valentine’s day (which I don’t think I told you about but was a pretty amazing evening, even epic some might say).  We would be surrounded by foliage of trees and the aromas of the herbs we grow while the cool breeze tried to blow the tea lights in beautiful lanterns Ike made. I still don’t know how Ike could ever consider Liberty Private Works or any Michelin starred restaurant when the most beautiful and meaningful place was right above our heads. Something tells me it’s because he thought that was what I would want.

How Ike actually proposed

A few Saturdays ago, I was having a pretty shitty day. I was at the hospital getting a general health screen. It was an utterly annoying process fraught with delays and poor communication. They didn’t believe that I exercised cause my body fat percentage was too high. The doctor was incredibly Chinese and asked me really stupid fucking questions. The place was freezing cold and I was half naked and she says ” you’re so cold? Do you always drink cold water?” “Yes you charlatan, I’m also so brown because I drink a lot of coffee. Silly me!”. She also couldn’t process my husky voice at all even though I kept insisting I did not have a sore throat. Then in the most delicate of situations, as she is gazing into my vagina, she nonchalantly asks ” so when did you notice that your voice was like this“? Like what?! Are you implying I’m a boy and my voice cracked? Bitch you are literally looking at my vagina!

It got worse. She didn’t like my breasts. She said they were too lumpy and admonished me for not doing self exams. She said I could have fibrocystic adenoma or “I am not saying it’s cancer” lumps and recommended an ultrasound.

Needless to say I was not thrilled at any of this and vented to Ike who was wandering about in Kowloon running an errand for a friend. I came home and got dressed for a wedding I had been invited to. When I was in the cab, he texted to say he loved me and that I looked pretty in my pink lace dress. He joked that I should not accept any proposals as “Men at weddings tend to be in a marrying mood. ” I in turn asked him how I could get him in one of those moods. “How do you know I’m not always in that mood? Maybe I am just stressed about getting a ring that meets your expectations.” You’d be inclined to read a lot into something like this but Ike always jokes about marriage and having eleven children. Plus I really couldn’t imagine Ike in a jewelry shop looking at diamond rings – the sticker shock would send him spinning. I simply responded “YOU more than meet my expectations” and continued by saying he’d made my day with what he said. C’est tout. I went to the wedding and it turned out that many of our friends were there and there was going to be an after party. So I asked Ike to get dressed and meet me later. He showed up looking like a million bucks in a white dinner jacket. We had an amazing time and we both got pretty drunk. Okay, I got hammered, I am not sure about Ike. I prodded him a couple of times about the ring comment. When we left the party I had shamelessly lifted one of the pink rose centerpieces with the bride’s permission. What can I say ? I’m a classy girl!

When we got home, Ike showed me the Christmas tree he had picked up in prince Edward market. It was in the living room and it was beautiful –  My very first real Christmas tree!

“Look, there’s only one ornament…”
“It is my hoop earring?”, I questioned, almost all refusing to see what it held, as if not to get my hopes up.
(But the hoop was just a conduit for hanging something else)
“No. It is your engagement ring.” He said definitively and slid the ring on my finger. While I stood there gaping.

Ike, then on bended knee, told a very drunk Jups how life had kept getting better and better since he had met her and that he wanted that to go on. Jups very drunkenly said things like “what?” “Oh my god..are you..what…” “Can you say the exact words?”

I didn’t cry when he spelt out ‘will you marry me’. I laughed with joy, obviously (and because I love surprises and I always laugh when Ike surprises me like this), and said ‘yes, of course! ‘ and ‘oh my god we are engaged!’

When I woke up the next day, much earlier than Ike, the first thing I checked was the gleaming opal ring on my left hand to make sure I hadn’t dreamt it all. Of course he remembered too because he had been completely sober when we purchased the ring, the tree, and when he set the whole thing up.

And to think I scoffed when the bride threw her bouquet and said to my friends who asked if I was going to try to grab it, “That’s okay I’m not in any rush”.

P.S. And speaking of irony…despite that I like Love Actually a whole lot, I don’t believe that Christmas is technically a romantic festival (it is one of love though, I’ll give you that) and now this big life-changing event is inextricably linked to Christmas!

P.P.S. Fairytale of New York is one of my favorite Christmas songs. It’s somehow so romantic. And I fucking love Christmas songs, in general. D’oh!


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