Sherry + Josep
by Sally Merrill February 9
Photos // Eric Lee
Sherry + Josep
Houston Skyline Proposal
For Christmas 2020, we decided that we would gift each other an experience instead of a material gift. Josep told me that my experience would take place in Houston in February. It was later revealed to be Saturday, February 6th.
The 1-2 weeks leading up to it, Josep would drop hints on what we’d be doing – from an alpaca farm to a spa experience, I was told to pack certain extra things for the trip. It’s very strange for me to not know what we’re doing, but I just went with it. We flew into Houston on Friday, February 5th, and that night, Josep guided me to pack a backpack for the adventures, including casual outfits, shoes and even a swimsuit!
The morning of, we had breakfast and coffee prior to leaving for our first excursion – a fancy photoshoot with a mutual friend. I was so sleepy because I hadn’t slept well. Off to a great start!
I drove us 20 minutes to the museum district, where we had a few photos taken, and we were directed to the next stop in downtown Houston. We arrived at the Le Meridien Hotel, where we were permitted to use the rooftop outside of business hours, but the door was locked. Through the little hiccup, we got to know our photographer better while waiting for the door to be unlocked.
We got access, and the guys started moving furniture around while I was just admiring the Houston skyline and buildings. At one point, we continued the photos, and Josep proceeded to remove my Kendra Scott double-knuckle ring on my left hand. I suddenly realized, “OMG. You’re doing this NOW?!” (In my head, proposals happen in the evening, NOT at 11am…)
He squeezed my hands, I saw tears welling in his eyes, and he proceeded to say a slew of things that I’ll have rewatch the video to remember. Five minutes later, he got on one knee and opened the box to an antique sapphire ring. (A few months ago, I had a nightmare that he proposed with an emerald sapphire ring and couldn’t hide my disgust while the photographer clicked away. This time, I burst into laughter.) Josep pulled out the real box to reveal a beautiful pear-shaped ring, a design familiar to that we discussed here and there, but it had every detail and more. I said YES! And the photoshoot continued. The photographer also brought his drone, so we were able to capture some cool memories that way.
Our next thing on the itinerary was lunch, but it was on the other side of town apparently. Josep also “realized” that he forgot his swimsuit, so we needed to swing back home real fast. I happily drove home, knowing that I’d be able to see my parents quickly prior to heading out again.
We parked and walked in, and I saw a giant ring balloon dangling in the stairwell…what? My parents aren’t into decorations like that. Around the corner in the kitchen awaited three of my best friends and another on FaceTime. One drove in from Austin, another had been living in Houston part time and the other flew in from Boston! They all told me they had elaborate plans for the weekend – visiting a future campus, crafting and helping friends move. EVERYONE had been lying to me all this time, including my parents!
You hear often about the feeling when your cheeks hurt so much from smiling…I finally experienced that. They’d partnered together to put together a sushi lunch, a boba cake, champagne, flowers, gifts and more. All of it being planned since mid-December resulted in the surprise of a lifetime!
The rest of the weekend included a boba run in Chinatown, the Love Lock Bridge in Downtown, a hot pot dinner at home and wedding and bridesmaids dress appointment. It was one thing for my best gals to be all here for me, but it was another thing for them to meet each other and spend time together. I keep replaying the weekend in my head and I can’t imagine it going any other way without the best people there. We were able to FaceTime a few close friends for a few minutes and surprise them too with the news! What a way to start the rest of our lives together!