Yaya Belle sent me a video of the event the same night and when I watched it, waterworks happened. My friend who's close to the family and was with me in the trip, cried, too. When our other friend came into the room and saw us crying, "Ay. What happened? Are you guys crying??" The usual retort while wiping our eyes with a "duh" tone we just had to say, "Ay hindi. Sinipon lang kasi may pinanood kami."
I heard of the full story when I got back to Manila. So my sister had no idea about it and she usually discovers the plans of Kuya LJ before he can pull it off. She said she initially thought during their anniversary that her boyfriend was going to propose. I was part of THAT surprise! Turns out he really planned to propose then; however, there's one major thing that didn't go as planned - the ring was not yet available. After that she didn't want to get her hopes up anymore. And so on that day, my sister was told by her boyfriend to wear a dress he got her before. He also was able to convince her to have her nails done a few days before. He didn't say where they'll be going (as they are weekend warriors, out travelling on weekends) so he just said she bring a lot of clothes. They might go surfing in La Union or up in Baguio or wherever.
My sister said she was amazed by the family's acting skills. It was just like a lazy Saturday for them. My dad even had a haircut and had his hair dyed. "Dad, bakit ka nagpapa-dye?" "Gusto ko lang bakit ba." My niece was just following her all the time and tried to foil the plan by saying my sister's boyfriend visited the house. Good thing Yaya Belle was quick to add a few words to make my sister dismiss what was said. Such a sumbongera kid. 😂
What my sister didn't know, after she was picked up, everyone else took a bath, quickly prepared, and went to the venue. They even joked, "Ninang, sama raw Chesca sa 'yo!" And when the couple went to their dinner venue, Kuya LJ changed to a long sleeved polo and slacks from white shirt and tsinelas to which my bruha sister said, "Ay bakit ikaw bihis na bihis ako mukhang naka-rubber shoes?!" "Birthday ko eh!" Fiiiine. Haha. She was also surprised she saw my mom there. "Errr why are you here?" "Birthday ni LJ," ignored her and proceeded to walk somewhere else. When she saw lots of people, she already had an idea and she was getting nervous.
He said he practiced, even going down on one knee in front of their boy, and yet he was so anxious that day he even took a bath twice to which his friend pointed out. He was sweating it out and couldn't hear well as his heart was pounding really loudly.
Kuya LJ forgot his lines, cried his eyes out, broke the case of the ring (for some reason he can't open it!!) in the process, but when he got down on one knee, you know it'll be a yes.
A lot of anecdotes, photos where my sister looked like she's wearing rubber shoes while getting proposed to, everyone bawling their eyes, and kids screaming and crying with the crowd. I may have missed the moment when that memory happened, but I'll be pretty damn sure to be there for more stories worth sharing to the world.