Well, Matt and I are back from our whirlwind trip and I can easily say it was the best one yet. Instead of taking you chronologically, I’m going to skip to the best part and cover the rest of the trip in later posts. 😉
After five days of exploring Italy, Matt took us to one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever seen – The Amalfi Coast. Our hotel – Hotel Caruso – was situated at the top of a mountain in a little town called Ravello and the views from the cliff side were breathtaking. Our room had a terrace with a view overlooking the Mediterranean and the surrounding villages. We arrived at the hotel around 5:30, quickly deposited our luggage, and went straight to the pool. We were hot from the drive down and just wanted to jump straight into the water! The pool is easily the main attraction of the hotel, considering it’s an infinity pool that overlooks the mountains and gives the perception that you’ll just drop straight down off the edge of the pool. My favorite thing to do was to swim to the edge, prop my arms up on the side, let my legs dangle, and just stare at the surrounding landscape. Peaceful beauty at its finest.
That evening, we had dinner at the hotel, because the view cannot be matched by the restaurants in Ravello’s main village. I had the chef’s recommended ravioli – there were samples of three different kinds that were beautifully presented on the plate. There was a cheese, a shrimp, and a mint ravioli each distinguished by a different color pasta. Matt’s beef ragu was especially delicious and we complimented our dinners with red wine, of course!
The next day we tossed around ideas of going on the free boat tour provided by the hotel, renting mopeds to zip around and see the sights, or just relaxing at the hotel. We opted for relaxation, since the earlier parts of our trip were spent on foot with sightseeing at the forefront. We laid under umbrellas reading and chatting, had lunch by the pool, swam around a bit, and just enjoyed each other’s company.
That evening, Matt told me we had an event to go to, but wouldn’t elaborate. See, the entire trip was a surprise and each activity along the way was revealed to me minutes before the actual event itself – from the trip destination, to the dinners and events, even the specific tours. I’d had some idea we were going to an event, because I’d picked my three-course meal before leaving on the trip, but the details were unknown; therefore, I put together my nicest outfit and curled my hair. Matt popped out of the bathroom in a tuxedo, which meant we were in for a real treat. First though, Matt told me we had time for some drinks at the hotel, so we made our way back up to the hotel restaurant for some champagne. The restaurant kindly provided us with tiny appetizers to compliment our champagne – the bacon-wrapped scallops were by far the best! I even tried caviar for the very first time, and I must say, it’s quite delicious.
Following dinner, Matt suggested we stop by the room to use the restroom and freshen up before heading off to the event. When I opened the door, it was dark, but I noticed a bit of light from the back of the room. As I walked in, the surprise was revealed to me – there were candles and rose petals everywhere and a private, candlelit dinner set-up on the terrace. We proceeded to spend the evening enjoying delicious wine recommended by the sommelier and fresh food like lobster and melon salad, sea bass on a potato cake (me), a rib eye steak (Matt), and an assortment of desserts. We ordered one more bottle of champagne to follow dinner, then we were left alone to enjoy the rest of our evening.
Just when I thought things were coming to a close, Matt brought me to my feet, gave me a kiss, said some things I’ll never forget, got down on one knee, and proposed! 🙂 I’d been telling myself all week that he wasn’t going to propose, because I didn’t want to waste a beautiful trip expecting something that might not happen. So when he did, I burst into tears. It took me quite awhile to even realize he was holding a ring, as I was hugging him and crying. Of course, the ring is beautiful – it’s been passed down in his family since the 19th century and I feel so honored to be wearing it. I also can’t seem to get over the shock that I am officially engaged to my best friend, my travel buddy, and my partner-in-crime.
Matt planned the perfect evening and engagement. I’ve always said that when we got engaged, I’d like for it to be private, special, and romantic. I think he hit the nail on the head with this one. 😉 Engagement aside, the Amalfi Coast and Ravello were simply magical, and I feel so lucky to have been able to visit that part of the world. Who knows? Maybe someday Matt and I will go back to remember this special time in our life!