New York, is a city of magic this time of year, but never more so than on a snowy day, the week before Christmas. So I decided to go out with my camera, as a 'tourist', to capture my very first, annual video "love letter" to the city at Christmas.
It was like a scene out of a movie, at first, I thought it WAS a movie.
As I was filming the Rockefeller Christmas tree, romance was in the air, heightened by the music and snow gently dusting the statues. It was surprisingly void of sightseers, when I noticed out of the corner of my eye, the rink had emptied and there was a couple standing alone on the ice. I zoomed in when I realized it was a proposal. The young man knelt on one knee and held up what appeared to be a ring, she clasped her hands to her face, they kissed, then embraced, as smattering of applause broke out in the sparse crowd.
After I finished and posted my video on YouTube in time for Christmas, I thought I'd like to find the "Mystery Couple" on ice. I was intrigued as to who they were, what was their story, sharing such an intimate moment. Was it random, or had they planned it for months? Did she know... or was it a complete surprise? Visions of John Cusack in Serendipity.
I went to Twitter and found a flurry of activity that had apparently gone "viral"with a photograph from the same day, December 17, of a couple in silhouette, man on bended knee... a beautiful, romantic moment, and that the photographer (Photo Credit: JohnnyThunders/Reddit.com) was trying to identify the "mystery" couple. I put the frames side by side, they were so close but it was hard to tell, but I'm pretty sure they are not the same couple.
But I was a week late in the Twittersphere that's an eternity, so not much chance of my mystery couple getting noticed.
At the time I wasn't aware this is a common, daily occurrence, through The Rink At Rockefeller Center Engagement On Ice. Couples can make arrangements to clear the rink for a public proposal and there are various photographers who are there at the ready to capture the precious memories.
It was covered on the NBC Nightly News "Mystery couple caught during proposal at Rockefeller Center Ice Rink" and even jumped the pond to The Daily Mail, "Who Is This Mystery Couple?"
As a veteran producer, I wasn't going to let this dissuade me, as a matter of fact, the challenge emboldened me. I decided to contact The Rink website and send them my videos and the date, December 17, to see if they could find the couple and forward the videos.
Much to my delight, I received a beautiful email immediately from the Rink, saying they would do her best to reach out to them.
And yesterday I received this....
"I should begin by saying this is both myself and my now fiancé [...] and we cannot thank you enough."
He proceeded to say he'd sent the video to his fiancé and she was 'in tears'. Apparently, they had driven up from Maryland, just for that day, to pop the question, but because of the snow, relatives were not able to take pictures and all they had was a rink employee using his phone, and when they sent me the picture, the tree was perfectly exposed and they were irrevocably underexposed.
They are now my Facebook friends: We agreed it was indeed a "Christmas Miracle."
EDITOR'S NOTE: The names identifying the individuals in this post have been removed at their request.