To us, Pickerel Lake has always been perfect. Last summer, before Sean went traveling through India and Nepal, we dedicated an entire day to each other, which meant first we ate too much lemon pie and then we hiked around Pickerel Lake. It was on a bench half way around the lake, with a handkerchief on my head and tears in my eyes that Sean and I both realized, we absolutely, positively could not live without one another.
Last week, Sean was adamant that we go hiking on Friday after he was done with work. I wanted to have cocktails with the girls, but he really wanted to go hiking, so I told the girls I’d see them later, made a batch of burritos to fill the picnic basket and off we went to Pickerel Lake. We wound around the lake, talking and holding hands. I made up fake conversations between the birds we heard and we both wondered aloud, “Why does no one else come here. It’s perfect.” As we neared the bench from last summer, Sean started talking about the last time we were here; about how so much has changed, but yet nothing at all. I grabbed his hand and sighed, “I’m so glad you aren’t leaving for six weeks tomorrow,” as we neared the bench to eat our burritos.
Hopping on the bench, I pointed at a nearby fisherman and Sean suddenly couldn’t sit on our bench anymore. What a strange thing for Sean to care about, I thought as I led the way down the path to a fallen log. Sitting down, I reached behind me for the picnic basket, but when I turned back, Sean was no longer next to me. He was down on one knee, holding both my hands in his own, looking up at me with big eyes and a smile.
And this is our engagement story. Another day at Pickerel Lake, sitting on a fallen log, agreeing to spend the rest of our lives exploring this world together. To us, Pickerel Lake is still perfect.