Or at least it was to Andrew’s parents and sister for a very long time.
He loved this bike, but he knew his family would not. I had this secret too, which I hated. I called it, “Mr. Dangerous.” I was so afraid that something would happen, and I would have to tell his parents:
“Sooo, Andrew is in the hospital.”
“Why!? What happened!?”
“Who’s motorcycle was he on!?!?”
I replayed this potential conversation over and over in my head. I despised this bike, and hated it even more because it was a secret. He didn’t want his family to worry about him, and as much as I begged him over and over again to tell them, he wouldn’t. Boys will be boys.
But THANK GOD I never had to have this conversation. I rode on Mr. Dangerous a few times. But, secretly I wanted to pee my pants each time I was on it, and repeated, “Please don’t let me die” over and over again in my head while my death grip was wrapped around Andrew’s waste. It was fun, I guess, but little did I know that Mr. Dangerous would soon be an important role in my future. :)
Andrew and I had talked about getting engaged, but the problem was being able to afford a ring. I completely understood this, being students in college, so I was in no hurry. I also didn't want to ask for a ring that required a 30 year payment plan. Lucky for him, I didn’t want a BIG million dollar ring. I wanted something simple and sparkly. I was 100% content with where our relationship was. Knowing he wanted to marry me one day was enough. :)
Andrew however, had another plan. He decided that he would put his bike up for sale, and use that money to buy a ring. He did tell me this, and I wasn't for it. I also didn't know that he was wanting to sell his bike REALLY soon.
In March of 2008, Andrew was in the library on Texas A&M’s campus studying. It was about 8 p.m. and he gets a call from a guy in Houston, TX. Andrew had a test the next day, but the guy wanted to see the bike. He was REALLY interested. So, Andrew calls his friend Derrick, and they take off to Houston. Meanwhile, Andrew told me he would call me when he left the library around midnight or so. I'm thinking he's studying for this big test, but really he's headed to Houston to sell his bike. He ended up in East, Houston (scary area, yikes) at some burger joint. Cold cash, the bike was sold.
Spring break was the next week, and I had to work baseball games for SHSU.
I had a game on Saturday at 2:00 and Andrew told me he would come to the game and see me. That morning, I thought he was sleeping in from the late nights earlier in the week, but he was driving to San Marcos with his sister to buy a ring I had seen a few months ago and liked. He made it to the game, ring was bought, and I had NO idea.
The next day Andrew went home to see his family, and I went home to see my Mom. That morning when I woke up, my Mom looked at me, smiling. It was weird. She offered to get my nails done? I declined, but I remember thinking, "What's her deal?" Again, I hadn't caught on at all.
That night Andrew had told me to meet him in Huntsville and that he was taking me on a date. I didn't ask any questions, because we hadn't had any quality time together, and hadn't been on a date in soooo long. He told me what we were doing would be a surprise, and again, I'm not catching on because he always does sweet little things like this.
I go to Huntsville, and I'm running late, of course, and get ready really quick. I wasn't looking dolled-up, but I didn't have time to get ready. I figured we were going to see a movie and dinner because I told him that I wanted to do that during Spring Break.
I'm thinking we are going to drive to The Woodlands, about 40 minutes away, but he starts to drive towards College Station. I asked where we were going, and he said, "You'll see."
We end up going to Olive Garden. Love Olive Garden. Mmmm I'm craving it right now. Anyway, the waiter was horrible. He took forever to bring us anything, and I could tell Andrew was a little peeved because he kept staring at the time. He asks the waiter for the bill, and for a Chocolate Tie Mousse Cake to go. (FYI: The best dessert ever). So, we start driving, and I'm thinking we are going to sneak dessert into a movie because we were driving toward the theatre and like I said, I'd been bugging him to see this movie.
We pass up the theatre. Hmm...Okay? Now what? He starts driving toward campus, and he turns into George Bush Library. We get out of the car, and he pops the trunk. Out comes a picnic basket? I was confused, but didn't think much about it.
(Flash back: Andrew and I after Church one Sunday, came to this park, and had a picnic. We stayed there for hours, talking, laughing, eating, and we even took a nap. I remember thinking how I wanted to get engaged there, but I never told him that.)
I didn't bring my camera, which was something that NEVER happens. So, knowing we are about to go eat dessert, I decide to take pictures with my iphone.
We sit down in the grass, and the sun was starting to set. Andrew and I were just talking, and he and I fed each other dessert. (This is normal, these little romantic dates, so again, I am NOT catching on.)
Next thing I know, Andrew says, "I have something for you."
I'm not really sure what he's talking about. I suspected a flower, but then he pulls out a red rose with a green bow with pink polka dots on it.
He says, "Shalyn, this first rose represents our past. The good times and the bad."
He then hands it to me, and then pulls out a second rose.
"Shalyn, this second rose represents the present. Right here. Right now."
At this point, I'm not sure what's going on...
And then he pulls out a third rose, and is holding onto it really tight so I can't see the bow.
"Shalyn, this third rose represents the future. I love you so much, and I want to spend the rest of my life with you."
He then hands me the rose, and a ring is tied onto the rose.
"Shalyn, will you marry me?"
At this point, I'm freaking out, my brain isn't functioning because I'm secretly trying to figure out how I didn't know this was about to happen, and because it was happening RIGHT NOW!?!?!?!?...
SO, I say, "Are you serious!? Right now!? Right now!? OMG OMG!!!"
He looks at me, and smiles. I just scream and say "YES!" as I tackle him with kisses and hugs.
I had no idea. I didn't know he sold his bike. He told me he loaned it to his friend Matt for the weekend so he could take it to a bike show. I had NO idea. He told me about all his sneaky-ness. He was in a hurry because he wanted to propose at sunset. It was wonderful.
We then proceeded to go back to his townhouse, and he told me that my Mom, and his family were meeting us BACK in Huntsville for coffee at Starbucks. My roommates didn't even know! He was afraid they'd act giddy around me, or somehow give it away. (They still give him a hard time.)
So after we met with our families at Starbucks, we went back to my apartment, and my roomies decorated my room with toilet paper and signs.
It was the most surreal feeling.
SO, that's the story. Every now and then, I'll hold my hand with my ring up to him, and make a "Vroooom Vroooom" noise. :)
Thanks for reading if you made it this far... :)