“She is going to have one good story,” I thought.
I had just watched Goldie get thrown in a big trough of Mississippi swamp water after his first solo flight in the mighty T-6 Texan.
I’ve gotten to know this Kyle’s long-time girlfriend Mel and heard rumors she was planning on watching his ceremonial dunk later in the week.
“Jayme, what are you doing Thursday?” Kyle asked, as he steered me away from the flight line.
“Um, let’s see. Wednesday I’m going to Walmart. Friday is a big P90X day. That yoga workout is a killer. Yep, Thursday is available so far, but I haven’t checked Facebook yet.”
It’s no secret the life of a job-less, kid-less, pilot student’s wife is one of leisure.
“Do you think you could help Mel get on base Thursday for my solo?”
“I’d love to,” I replied.
It wasn’t long ago I was an Air Force Groupie myself with all of the inconvenience and none of the perks.
“Thanks. This is a big, big secret, but…” he started.
Oh no. Was he asking me to break some kind of base rule by bringing her to the squadron? I had the figurative ear muffs ready to go for an ask-forgiveness-not-permission defense, should one become necessary.
“…I’m going to propose to her after I get dunked.”
Before I could sensor myself, the Air Force Groupie in me blurted out, “It’s about time,” but as we parted ways, my prevailing thought was, “She is going to have one good story.”
Single guys please note: Engagement stories are just as important as the ring. You have no idea how many times she’ll be asked to tell it in detail. Also, be sure to get down on one knee or you will be judged.
Somehow the students and spouses of class 13-11 all managed to keep our wagging tongues wagging about other things for two whole days. This is a huge accomplishment for the women in particular. Between trips to the Commissary and workouts, we talk. A lot.
When the moment arrived, Kyle climbed out of the murky water, got down on one knee, and posed the question anticipated and feared in equal measure by men worldwide.
We watched Mel’s animated facial expressions as she sped through the stages of confusion, disbelief, and then elation.
She breathlessly repeated, “Yes,” and threw herself into his dripping arms. Champagne rained down and they turned the page to the next chapter of their lives together with one good engagement story to tell.