It all started under a bridge...
The engagement of Gina Prodan + Ryan Kelly
I met Ryan at Ingenuity Fest, in Cleveland...
Back when they held it in the underbelly of the Detroit-Superior Bridge. Picture it: beautiful early fall evening on the Cuyahoga River. music, technology and the smell of food-truck tater tots in the air. We'd both come with our own friends, and in this flurry of drinks, giggles and licorice, we were introduced by my friend Katie.
I didn't think anything of the five minutes Ryan and I talked about the movie Boyz n the Hood in the Cleveland water works parking lot. It just turned out to be the most important conversation of my life.
Two years later, we were headed to dinner...
Muttering, muttering, muttering, Ryan seemed so nervous as we drove past the parking lot where we met. He was flustered turning down the way-wrong street, and I wondered why he was taking such a stupid route to Bac. Then he parked.
It was wicked cold outside: late-January in Cleveland, ankle-deep snow on the ground, whipping winds smacking us in the face. He helped me out of the car, pulling me up the hill to see the lot was closed.
Muttering, muttering, muttering, my usually cool guy, grabbed my hand and pulled me fumbling up the hill, up the stairs to the Detroit-Superior Bridge, and started walking. About 100 paces onto the bridge, he stopped, and I, of course, walked into him.
Ryan steadied me with my shoulders. Looked around and said, "OK, I think this should be good." Down on one knee in the snow. No clue what he said. I just started crying, which (like everyone else) I never thought I'd do, and said yes. He gave me the ring. We put it on. And then I leapt into his arms. We hugged for a few seconds, he kissed me and said, "I love you. Now get off me; I'm f-ing freezing."
*Background bridge drawing by Small Screen Designs.