How We Met
Alex and Toby met at an event through work, Toby was introduced by his boss at the time Graham Staples. Over the usual ex-pat visa chat, Graham decided to imply Toby was in Australia on a de facto visa in a relationship with a man, thus putting our relationship well and truly in the friend-zone.
Alex and Toby had been talking about getting engaged for a few months, with Toby insisting it should be Alex who should ask ‘as a strong proud feminist’. Alex had other ideas but did request that Toby didn’t worry too much about the ring.
The engagement ring began its journey in Brampton, England. Toby had been allocated a 7-9am (GMT) time slot by Alex’s father Stuart to call. On asking for his blessing on Toby’s planned proposal Stuart had one question “do you have any doubts?”, to which Toby replied “none”, “right that’s my bit done then” said Stuart. Toby went on to ask about the possibility of having Alex’s Grandmothers ring, Stuart said “that’s not my department” and promptly passed the phone across the bed to Sheena (Alex’s mother) from where the conversation continued.
A plan was hatched and the engagement ring (which is the size of the heart of the ocean from Titanic) was on it’s way to London with Stuart. Wearing his familiar trademark striped ‘Spoofing’ jacket the ring was then passed to Toby’s friend Mark at Paddington Station, from where it made its way with Mark & Phoebe to Sydney Australia.
Toby had planned to keep the ring handy and wait for the perfect moment to appear when a proposal seemed quite fitting. The weeks went on and with one eye on the upcoming full calendar of family visits and work travel, Toby realised that the following weekend was his only opportunity unless he wanted to wait another 6 weeks.
Saturday arrived and Alex, who was feeling unwell, headed off to the hair dresses, leaving Toby with a window to make the necessary preparations. Alex returned 3 hours and $400 later to Toby who propositioned her to join in a game he had created in her absents. Alex, who just wanted to go for lunch, decided to humour Toby in hope that this would lead to a swifter exit. Toby had prepared a game under the brief of Alex saying “I’m not that bothered about an engagement ring”, the game consisted Toby asking Alex to select her own engagement ring out of the selection of random ring boxes filled with homemade rings, made from a range of tinfoil, pasta and bluetack.
As Alex rolled her eyes and reluctantly made her way through each box, to her surprise in the final box was hiding her Grandmothers ring. Known for his macho mannerism, Toby promptly burst into tears and just about got the words out to ask Alex to marry him. Thankfully Alex agreed and the pair spent the day drinking champagne with friends.