23 January 2010

Four years ago, tonight

I asked Yoko to marry me.

That day, I had gone to the department store to look at the ring and order the size Yoko needed, but they had it in stock. I bought it and remember the feeling of it in my pocket, like it was going to explode. I had no plan to give it to her. I hadn't really thought any of it through--in three weeks we had gone from talking about going to Europe together on a trip to suddenly having this ring. I don't remember much of what I was thinking except that I knew that it was right and it was going to work out and that if it didn't, it was a gamble I needed to take to prove something to myself. I'm not sure what that was. I loved her.

I went to my friend Neal's apartment, and put the ring on the table without saying anything and he said, 'You're fucking crazy' and we sat and talked about how crazy I was for about an hour. I called Yoko and told her that I had one more small birthday gift for her and would she be around later.

When I went to her apartment, I could contain it: I had her sit down and I said, Close your eyes and hold out your hands, and she did. I put the ring in her hands and said, '結婚しましょうか?' 'Let's get married?' She said, Yes, and suddenly, we were engaged. Reckless and silly and in love.
It had only been four months of dating. My Japanese was still quite poor. I was losing my faith and we were both trying to finish MAs. But it just happened to us — like the wave I was talking about earlier this month. We just had to stay in front of it to keep from falling.

I don't remember if I spent the night. It was a Monday, so I probably went home around 2, riding my scooter, because even though it was January, it was warm. And I remember being electrified by what we were making out of nothing. It's worked out, so far.