Yes, that’s right. No fancy dinner or temple square for us. We got engaged at the mental hospital. An unexpected location and an even more unexpected proposal.
To be fair, we weren’t actually inside the mental hospital. Months ago, Ryan took me on a creepy hike behind it. As we explored an abandoned isolation chamber, a stone amphitheatre, and the shadowy mountainside, I felt fear, excitement, and, by the end of the night, the first inklings that I was falling in love.
So I probably should have seen it coming when we went back the night of September 10. He said we were meeting up with some friends there. Ok sure. Why not? We were walking around a pretty pond, watching fish and looking for the others, when he pointed out something shiny in the bushes. A silver fortune cookie.
As soon as I saw it, I stopped. Several weeks earlier, I had bought a silver fortune cookie for us to pass notes back and forth. Now, it was sitting in the bushes with cotton stuffing sticking out the edges--the kind of stuffing you'd expect would be protecting something very expensive inside...
I opened it, the anticipation growing more and more. Ryan had always said he wanted to pick out his future wife's ring himself, but I was sure he hadn't bought one already. No, no, not for a couple more months probably. In the middle of all the protect-something-really-expensive stuffing, I found... a fortune. No sparkle. No shine.
Not what I expected, but then again, if you had asked me that morning, I hadn't been expecting a proposal either. When I turned back to face Ryan, he knelt down on one knee and the (un)expected actually happened. He proposed.
And I said yes.