I wasn’t supposed to stay longer than three months in the Goulburn Valley. Four years later, a six-figure mortgage, a cat, four chooks and a 6'2 farmer, I have also recently acquired an engagement ring.
Tinder should come with a disclaimer “if you swipe right, your life as you know it may take an unexpected twist... and you’re going to bloody love it”.
I met Farmer Bob after two months of chatting on tinder and two days after I signed a contract to remain ongoing in the job I had come up to do for three months.
Me, being the expert in all things Shepparton after my short time here, venturing out of Quest at least five times for dinner, suggested we meet one night at Fryers Cafe. Farmer Bob with all his culinary and Shepparton dining experience (not much) agreed.
Standing outside Fryers Street Food Store thinking I had been well and truly stood up, got a rather timid phone call asking where I was because Friars was shut.
A little bit of back and forth and that’s when we both discovered there was in fact two places in very close vicinity with Fryers in the title. We met halfway in the middle had a couple of drinks and the rest is history.
Bob is a farmer and me, being from coastal Victoria, my farming expertise was lacking.
From being confused as to why dates had to be postponed for watering and going around the sheep on the way to dinner; to rescuing brown snakes trapped in ropes and having his whole family know you took pity on a poor ewe with mastitis, which was in fact a ram and definitely didn’t have mastitis.
This farming gig is a tough lesson for a girl from the coast!
Bob, being a farmer, is a natural know it all. One year he magically became a furniture builder overnight and made me the most incredible bench seat for my birthday. He used parts of old tractors from the farm, the most gorgeous stained wood and used wool stamps as stencils to decorate.
We had just bought our first home and it one of the first things he wanted us to move onto our new deck.
Here, on my beautiful chair, the day the first grain cheque from 2017 harvest was cleared, he proposed!
He had flown into the closest jewellery store he could find and somehow fluked picking the most perfect and beautiful ring I have ever seen. He even took in one of my rings for size reference. Hot tip - make sure they know where your jewellery is kept so they can rummage through in a nervous rush.
We were having friends over for dinner and l was shopping when I got a weird phone call asking if I thought Bob should buy milk. Clue number one.
So much weirdness but the poor bloke was panicking. He had been trying all day to get in contact with my dad without actually having his phone number.
Clue number two. I got home to a smart dressed cleanly shaven boyfriend. Not usually unclean but still in his work gear is the standard.
While I was changing he managed to rummage through my bag, find my phone and get my dad’s number. He was out on the back deck making the all-important phone call while I was thinking about what salad to make for our friends.
Bob came inside and told me to come outside and relax for 5 minutes. Sitting on my chair, which weirdly had the cushions thrown off it (clue number three), I told him how the chair was the most beautiful gift anyone had ever given me...
And if we ever broke up I would get to keep it...
Cue the perfect moment for Farmer Bob to leap in and make sure that never happened!
There were tears, so many oh my gods, a “what are you doing?!” (Mainly because I couldn’t hear what the poor nervous thing was saying) and then the moment I saw my ring. Of course the answer was yes - a thousand times over with a few profanities thrown in just for effect.
The dust settles, the tears stop and then you think – well now what?!
- The Bride-to-be