The Proposal

 
Above is a video with the song that Konrad wrote for the proposal, along with animated pictures of their first two years together.

Below is a very detailed version of the proposal and the engagement. For the quick version, please refer to Our Story page.

 

Preparation

The proposal in it's final form took a lot of time and planning. Konrad definitely wanted to do something special for Marina, and decided against the idea of proposing with a ring. Knowing Marina, she always preferred gifts that were handmade rather than bought, which led to the idea that Konrad will write her an instrumental song with which he will propose. This was ideal since before then, Marina has never heard Konrad play.

Now that he had an idea about how to propose, he figured that although a bit cliché, Paris would be the best place to do it, since Marina has never been and it was always her dream to go. So Konrad made sure that this will be one of their stops during their cross-Europe trip.

Marina left early for the trip and the plan was for them to meet in Moscow. Among other things, this gave Konrad 3 days to compose and record the song for Marina, and come up with a story poem about them.

Once in Russia, Konrad figured this would the perfect opportunity to ask Marina's parents for her hand. He didn't want to raise suspicion, so he couldn't ask any of her friends how to ask the parents for their daughter's hand. So he decided to seek help in a hostel they were staying at in Saint Petersburg. The hostel staff was very excited about this and was definitely eager to help. As a final stop in Russia, Konrad and Marina visited her parents, at which point Konrad was waiting for an ideal time to ask without raising suspicion. It wasn't until the morning they were leaving, Marina was busy with packing, so Konrad took the opportunity to talk to her parents and ask for permission. They were happy with the news and gave Konrad their blessing. Thus far, everything was going according to the plan.

As a final piece of the preparation, Konrad needed to find a way to synchronize his watch with the Eiffel tower, to know exactly the time (to the second) it will illuminate with the 20,000 sparkling lights. He was able to find a WebCam that showed the live view of the tower, and based on that he was able to precisely synchronize. Marina didn't know that the tower sparkled every hour, so Konrad was very careful for her not to find out before the proposal.

 

Proposal

The day they arrived in Paris, Konrad decided he will pop the question the same night as the weather was perfect for a picnic. On their way to the Eiffel Tower, Konrad picked up a bottle of wine and a baguette. They found a nice quiet spot by the tower where Konrad decided to setup the picnic. He already had everything with him, including a blanket, cork screw, plastic cups and the iPods. At this point everything was falling into place for a perfect execution of the planned proposal. Once the picnic was setup, Konrad and Marina opened the bottle of wine and enjoyed their time together sitting by the tower.

After the sunset, slightly before 09:55 PM Konrad knew it was time to start the proposal sequence. He asked Marina to trust him as he blindfolded her, and put the earphones of one of the iPods into her ears. He opened his book with the prepared story poem and started playing the song on the iPod. Throughout the instrumental song, Konrad read out the story poem he wrote about them and at the end he finished with the words "I'd like our story to continue...", after which he took Marina's blindfold off, got on one knee, and asked her to marry him, at which point the tower illuminated with the sparkling lights.

 

Engagement

Marina, overwhelmed by the emotions and tears, said "I can't believe you didn't think of bringing tissues" to which Konrad asked "Is that a Yes?". Marina laughed and answered "Of course!", after which they kissed and were engaged on June 17th, 2010 at 10:01 PM (though without a ring for another 4 months). Until about 11:00 PM of the same day Marina thought the 20,000 lights were specially ordered for the occasion. After 11:00 she realized it's sequenced every hour, but luckily she didn't change her answer.

QUICK REFERENCE   the 3 w's

What
Wedding Ceremony
followed by a Reception
When
September 3rd, 2011
Wedding Ceremony
The Bridal Procession will begin at 2:00 p.m. sharp, so we would appreciate if our guests arrived at least 10-15 minutes early.
Group Picture
at ~3:05 p.m. (weather permitting)
Reception
starts at 5:00 p.m.
Where
Wedding Ceremony
at Saint Patrick’s Basilica
on 220 Kent Street,
Ottawa, Ontario
Reception
at the Baldachin Inn on
111 St. Lawrence Street,
Merrickville, Ontario
 
For more quick information, please visit the FAQ page.