If you clicked the prank link on our wedding web site, then we want to know why you would be interested in a site with a name like “Hot Horny Hookups?” LOL

Now for the real story.

We actually met at a Salsa event. From there, we occasionally saw each other at Salsa events around Richmond.  Clara had been an avid Salsa dancer for years.  She was also a Salsa instructor and promoter.  Michael was still a beginner Salsa student.  As such, he was too intimidated to ask her to dance.   However, Michael was interested in getting to know her socially.  He chose a slow and indirect approach rather than the typical direct flirtatious approach.   As his Salsa skills grew, he did ask her to dance a few times and kept the conversation light.

One night at the conclusion of a Salsa event that she hosted, Michael engaged Clara in conversation.  He guided the conversation towards dating  and how hard it was to find someone who is serious and who also has the qualities that we mutually wanted.  This was the longest conversation that we had ever had.  Michael closed the conversation with some bogus reason that the two of them could never date.

Michael later learned that Clara was pissed that I had drawn her in and stimulated her curiosity but abruptly ended things before they could even get started.  Michael sensed her feelings on this and was excited that she seemed interested but he didn’t want to reel her in yet.  He engaged her in another long conversation a couple of months later at the end of a Salsa event.  At that point, she indicated that she was glad to be single and unattached.  Michael responded with the question, “What if you somehow met a guy that treated you well and he met a lot of the criteria in what you would like in a mate?  Would you respond or choose to remain unattached?”  She indicated an openness to explore getting to know the right guy when the time came.  The conversation ended there.

On March 1, 2009 a group of us were planning to attend a Salsa event in another town. A snow storm forecast for that town caused us to cancel the trip. Michael used that as an excuse to invite Clara to a movie instead.  Clara was hesitant due to the predicted snow.  Michael suggested that the forecasters often get things wrong and that it would be safe to meet at the theater.  She reluctantly accepted the invitation.  Clara arrived a couple of minutes ahead of Michael and when he arrived she had already purchased tickets.  Michael immediately thought…Wow!  He wasn’t accustomed to a lady taking the initiative to pay for things.  He quickly bought the snacks and they enjoyed the movie.  However, the forecasters were right.  When they left the theater, their cars were covered in snow.  Scraping snow from the cars was the conclusion to our first date.  Although physically cold, they left knowing that they could become more than friends.

From there, a friendship grew into a romance, and intentions were made clear. Michael let it be known that he was looking to eventually get married. Clara was emphatic that she would never be interested in getting married. Michael knew that the reason a woman would say this is that she didn’t believe that she could find a man that she could trust.

Over the following months, trust and love grew. Michael was confident that he had found a woman that demonstrated the qualities he wanted in a wife.  He then began to work on psychologically preparing Clara to accept the idea of getting married. Occasional questions like, “If you did ever decide to marry someone, would you prefer a big wedding, or a small family wedding.” or “If you ever did get married, what would your wedding colors be?” Clara saw through those questions and ignored or laughed at them initially. Then little by little she began to respond with hypothetical answers. This gave Michael hope that his “conditioning” plan was working.

As a Salsa Instructor and Promoter, Clara would regularly host Salsa dance events. In January of 2009 Michael revived his childhood hobby of performing magic tricks. Clara eventually asked Michael to perform a trick for the entire group during the announcements at one of her Salsa events. He did this on a couple of occasions. In May of 2012 Clara hosted a big Salsa dance party to celebrate her birthday. She again asked Michael to perform a trick for the entire group. By then, Michael was ready to ask Clara to marry him, so he made a plan. They had not talked about marriage other than the intermittent conditioning questions. Yet, after three years as a couple, Michael was willing to take the risk and ask.  He bought a ring and devised a plan for the proposal. At the conclusion of the trick, he produced the ring magically. At first Clara didn’t recognize what it was. He then knelt and asked for her hand in marriage. See the video link for the proposal.

Thanks for visiting our wedding website and we look forward to seeing you soon.

Clara and Michael

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