Suddenly, my phone starts ringing...
It's from a number I don't recognize. All I've been getting lately are spam/scam calls so I answer it thinking I'll hear a little beep and then an auto-recorded message. But I was wrong.
"Hello? This is Cynthia. I'm calling on behalf of my boss. He's traveling to Pebble Beach and would like to propose to his girlfriend in two days. I know it's short notice but we found your page and absolutely love your work and are hoping you're available!"
(Me -mid-teeth-brushing- quickly gathers myself to sound as professional as possible)
"Hello! Oh my gosh that sounds amazing! I'd love to capture his proposal. What does he have in mind?"
Cynthia goes on to tell me how her boss has this beautiful idea: pop the question on the 18th hole at Pebble Beach Golf Links.
This was going to be easy. There's always a ton of people watching the 18th hole as golfers finish up their game so it's not uncommon to see people with cameras out there. It was going to be easy to blend into the crowd and go seemingly unnoticed. I replied, "He does know that it's going to be dark by 5pm and it's scheduled to rain all day, right?"
Cynthia goes above and beyond and (as it turns out) was a wedding planner for 19 years in Los Angeles so she knows all of the things and had informed her boss. During our conversation, she could not stop talking about what an amazing person her boss was and how she adored his girlfriend, soon-to-be-fiancé. Based off of that alone, I knew these were people I wanted to meet and work with.
Now it's the day of the proposal...
I grab my good friend Lela and we head out to Pebble Beach Golf Course's 18th Hole (of course I'm going to have a second shooter for this). We get setup in complimentary angles and wait for the two lovebirds to make their way to the 18th hole.
We see them! Oh wait, that's not them.
I get texts from B along the way as they're making their way through the course. They're set back a little from the groups in front of them. Undoubtedly the weather is playing a part in this delay. But no matter that! Lela and I are prepared and we wait...pretending we're taking pictures of the gorgeous landscape. I mean, maybe we are...after all it's gorgeous!
They make their way to the 18th hole and finally end up on the green. J sinks her shot and goes to retrieve it; B gets down on one knee.
She just stares at him, refusing to walk over.
So he gets up, walks over to her, and gets down on one knee again.
J is in shock. She doesn't know what's going on. Once it finally hits her, she says yes and excitedly accepts the ring. They smooch. Their golf partners clap. Lela and I descend on them like we're the paparazzi, capturing every moment and every emotion.
We give them a few moments to let it process and then we take a couple more photos of them being all cute and stuff, all the while being mindful of the groups golfing after them. Finally it's time for them to go back to their rooms to get gussied up, then it'll be time for their Mini Engagement Session.
The Proposal wasn't the only surprise B had orchestrated...
While they got ready, we focused on capturing the ring. We wanted to give her a moment to shine and appreciate her beauty. Once the ring shots were done and B + J had finished getting ready, we walked around the Pebble Beach shopping center and admired the beautiful holiday lights they had strung along the buildings and all around the tree that stood right in the center of the parkway.
As we're taking more cute pictures of these two, a group emerges from inside...it's their parents! B had planned to have both his and her parents fly in to surprise her for the occasion. As if she wasn't still in shock of him proposing in the way he did, this added to the shock and surprise!
It was a beautiful moment, full of emotions. Joy, excitement, love...there were definitely tears. The good kind though!
They all shared some strong hugs (the best kind of hugs), joyous tears, and lots and lots of laughter. We took some family group photos and then finished the evening with more couple's portraits, with the final shots involving wine, giggles, and snuggles on the stairs.
Proposals are always filled with so much joy, confusion, and excitement. It was an absolutely beautiful day and a perfect way to end the 20222 season...with a new beginning.