The first glance for these two occurred in March of 2011 at the house party of a mutual friend. Liz was coming back from the embassy in Moscow; Josh, from the embassy in Bulgaria. Josh saw Liz seated from across the room and remembers thinking, “Who is that person?” He walked over to her, flipped an empty chair around, and cornered her in the living room. And they talked.
For six straight hours.
Only when they went back outside to get drinks did they realize…that cops had broken up the party, everything had been moved inside, and everyone was gone.
A few days later, Josh took Liz to what they remember as a “swanky speak-easy.” Josh wore a nice suit, which made Liz think he had a nice job.
In the ensuing months, they went to restaurants, played cribbage and backgammon together, talked about politics, foreign affairs, Congress, the world. And sometimes they read together, not talking at all.
In the ensuing years, they explored important questions, traveled the world together to places including but not limited to Iceland, Guatemala, Mexico, Belize…Montreal, Paris, Istanbul, Jerusalem, San Francisco, & the Cape. They shared goals and dreams, and eventually they began to be able to see one another as a partner.
And then in September of 2012, Josh replicated his and Liz’s first trip together by traveling to Reykjavík, because as he put it to me, “I just wanted to take Liz back where I saw her the happiest.” One evening, after visiting a geothermal spring and the restaurant Blue Lagoon, Josh pulled out a ring box. And Liz almost fainted…because the box was empty. Because Josh wanted Liz to pick out the ring, which she eventually did, in Paris.
But it was in Reykjavík, that he asked for her hand in marriage.
…Which is what brings us to today, and to this celebration.
photo by Joy Thigpen