Ask any young-at-heart married lady the circumstances around the day their dude popped the big question. I dare you. Betcha nine dollars you will still find, like a great big diamond, multi-faceted sparkles dancing in her eyeballs. Heck, it’s only been 38 years and I still recall the big moment. Guess that makes me a hopeful, as opposed to hopeless, romantic. It’s probably why it was so exciting to have been a teeny part of the process, but this time from our son’s perspective. It was the week of Christmas when we were out performing last minute shopping and errands. One stop included our local Jeweler’s Bench to pick up a jewelry repair. “Got any diamonds in the back,” said our spontaneous Ricky, to Kimberly, the adorable sales lady behind the counter. Ricky had been chatting for months about purchasing Kate an engagement ring. We knew it was coming. However, I didn’t know that day could potentially be “the day.” Kimberly was impressed that Ricky had done his homework and knew above and beyond the three C’s of diamond vocabulary … cut, clarity and color. He also had a size and price in mind. And Kimberly delivered. The next day Ricky had his perfect diamond perched in the perfect ring for his lovely Kate. Now came the plotting and planning of the big “moment.” Since the ring was literally burning a ginormous hole in the pocket of his jeans, he decided New Year’s Eve would be the perfect date. Yep, Kate’s and Ricky’s parents could probably keep the secret for an entire week. Beyond that and four parents might spontaneously combust leaving a sticky mess all over their respective ceilings. Since Ricky and Kate would be in the San Francisco area before he reported to his Air Force base assignment, he decided that would the perfect spot. Only it turned out when he tried to make a reservation, every good restaurant in the city was booked weeks in advance. “So in a last-minute, desperate move, I decided to propose on the 30th, without an idea of when or where. Keeping in mind that giving Kate any hints could compromise the entire plan, and surprise, I figured the best course was to have little to no plan,” Ricky said. One of the spots Kate wanted to see while in San Francisco was the Golden Gate National Recreation Area located on the far side of the Golden Gate Bridge, opposite the city. “You have to drive for a good five or 10 minutes straight uphill to reach the top of this lookout point, and then hike another fifteen minutes. Well, we did just that, and it sure paid off. The view was absolutely amazing with the sun setting in the background. There was a view of the entire city with the Golden Gate Bridge in the foreground, a view of the entire bay, and the Pacific Ocean to our backs,” Ricky breathed a sigh of relief. Their plan was to head up and take pictures, but obviously Ricky’s goal was to hit a knee. Personally, I was so glad hitting a knee was apparently still in vogue. Yep, he had decided they were not coming down from that hill without popping the question. “Now was about the time when the butterflies started infiltrating my stomach, but it just wasn’t the right time. I figured I’d know when it was, but there were a lot of people awkwardly sitting around the area,” sweated Ricky. “I looked around and saw the perfect location but wouldn’t you know there were six or seven dudes standing in that exact spot taking pictures. One of them was awkwardly posing in bright neon, spandex pants with no shirt on. Normally I would have laughed at this but it was kind of annoying that buffoonery was ruining my proposal plans. I wasn’t about to compromise for a less-perfect spot, so I sat there with Kate and waited thirty minutes until the man with the neon pants left.” Afterward, the place was deserted. So they walked up to the spot, a little area where the side of the hill jutted out, giving an unobstructed and perfect view of the entire bay area. Kate totally sensed what was about to happen but kept taking pictures. Later she confessed it was to give him time to rehearse. “So she came back over to me after I stood there practicing my speech. After some awkward silence, I gave it my best shot, but alas, it sounded utterly corny. I told her how since we were about to start a new year, it would be an appropriate time to ask her a question. Yes, I actually said, ‘I want to ask you a question.’ I hit a knee and in a shaky voice asked her to marry me. Heck if she didn’t say yes, loud and proud. I was so caught up in the moment I forgot to open the ring box. She had to ask me about it, sadly, because I was just holding it in my hand. The ring fit perfectly and we haven’t stopped smiling since,” said Ricky. Neither have the parents of Ricky and Kate. Dixie Frantz is a long-time Kingwood resident and newspaper columnist since 1996. E-mail Dixie with your comments at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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