It had been my 30th birthday a few days before and I guessed that some sort of surprise party was being organised by my boyfriend for Saturday. He had asked for the names of my 20 closest friends a while back and he had said I wasn’t allowed to organise anything myself. But I didn’t know where this was happening or at what time or who was coming or even if it was a party at all or maybe a dinner or drinks? So when I woke up on Saturday, my boyfriend said that he was going to make me breakfast in bed. I waited a while.. eventually he came in with coffee. Then I waited a bit more….still no breakfast. Eventually (after about an hour and a half in bed awake) he came and said that he was going out for a minute but not to leave my room. Five minutes later I got a phone call from my boyfriend saying that after he had hung up I had to go into the living room but not to phone anyone or talk to anyone and that he loved me, to trust him and he’d see me soon. Eck!
So I went into the living room and there were two black roses alongside a note that said something like “Good morning! Be prepared as your birthday starts now! You have two hours to get ready, make yourself look stunning but be prepared to walk. At exactly 2pm leave the house, get on the tube and go to Bermondsey station. Once there turn left and walk to the park. Head towards the bandstand. Hold the roses high and be prepared for anything!” So I spend the next 2 hours preening myself and getting quite nervous as I wasn’t really sure what was going to happen. At 2pm I left the house walked to the tube station and along the way there were florescent ‘G’ signs posted to lampposts and metal railings. Made me feel a little less nervous as was a reminder that my boyfriend had been standing where I am only a few hours before
I got to the park and headed along a beautiful tree lined path on a very blustery day and very dramatic with all the leaves blowing about. As I approached the bandstand a guy in dark glasses and a hat (looking like one of the blues brothers) came up to me and starting singing about a great love that existed for me in this town (I later found out that my fiancé had written this song and the others) and that I had to search to find out what the mystery of today was. Then he gave me a note which gave me instructions to go to Natural History museum. Again once I got out at South Kensington tube station, I saw signs on lampposts for me and felt very special that all these people saw them and didn’t understand and only I knew they were meant for me! Once there another blues brothers-esque guy (who I recognised as one of my boyfriends actor friends – it was nice to see someone i knew!) started singing to me in front of lots of tourists! He sang Best Eyes in London to the tune of Worst pies in London from Sweeney Todd (one of my favourite musicals and special to us both). It was really brilliant. I got another note to go to London Bridge with one last singer who said something along the lines of this whole adventure has been just a device to bide time and get me out of my flat. He gave me a note which said ‘ go back to your flat and make haste’ So now I thought there would be a party waiting for me back at the flat.
But once I got there I went into the sitting room and the room was full – every surface covered full – of flowers and my boyfriend was standing there in his suit. I still didn’t clock what was happening and half suspected that there would be loads of people hiding in my bedroom waiting to pop out! Then he told me to close my eyes and only open them when I heard my name. So when I heard ‘will you marry me” I opened my eyes and he was kneeling down with a ring looking pretty nervous! I was really surprised as although I suspected there may be plans for an engagement I didn’t think it would happen on my birthday!
After celebrating for a bit, we went off to the surprise party which he had booked at a local pub! Quite some day! Lots of friends were there and it was great to be able to see everyone and celebrate!