Part 4: Montreal
The first trip HP and I ever took together was to the city of Montreal. We had only been dating about 8 months so this trip to another country together was a big deal for me. I was into the UFC at the time and there was a big fight going on between George St Pierre and Josh Koshcheck. HP being HP got us tickets and booked a hotel as soon as she heard about it. I had never been to Montreal before that obviously so I didn’t know what to expect. I instantly fell in love with the city. Growing up in The Bronx, I’m used to the fast pace of New York. Cars honking, pollution, and rude people are a normal thing. Montreal is a city where there’s basically none of that. The structures of Montreal made it seem as if we were in Europe. The shopping, the food, the smell, the language, the politeness of the people… the churches. I was hooked. I didn’t want to leave! I remember googling “How to become a Canadian Citizen”. HP made that first trip amazing. She was such a trooper letting me explore as much as I could. The UFC fight was literally an afterthought to everything else. I vowed to be back. As the years passed, everytime there was a big UFC fight in Montreal, we were there! I’ve seen St Pierre vs Condit and St Pierre vs Diaz. HP didn’t even care about the fights at that point. She was just there because I wanted to be and she loved the shopping. On one of our trips to Montreal, while out exploring, we came across The Notre Dame Cathedral. It was literally the most beautiful church I had ever seen. I’m not super religious, but I believe in God. We went inside and HP can tell you, I was brought to tears. At the time, I didn’t know what it was or how to explain it but I just started crying. Randomly in a huge church, in another country, I sat on a bench and just cried. Thinking about it now, I finally figured it out.
The church itself was beautiful enough, and I’m sure all the paintings in the stain glass, the statues and the structures within have brung people to tears in the past. But for me, I had just felt so blessed. In my first blog, I wrote about how I felt damaged. How someone had promised to love me forever and then they were gone. It felt as if that person had left me in the Bronx to die and that I had seen all I would ever see and had done all I would ever do. HP was living proof that none of that would ever happen. That in fact, I haven’t seen or had done anything yet. This woman came into my life and completely changed it. I wouldn’t have been able to afford a new mustang, a new Jeep, trips to Vegas, trips to Boston, Yankees and Red Sox’s games, Beyonce and Jay-Z concerts, and a ton of other shit without her help. They say behind every man is a good woman, they should change it from “Behind” to “Beside”. I sat in that church and in my head I thanked God for everything I had and had done, and for everything I had yet to do. But most importantly, I thanked God for her. She was all mine. The person I could count on above all who would never hurt and betray me. Who would do her best to never let me down and would never leave me to die anywhere. In that church, I knew, I had found a wife.
My selfishness and distractions made it so that it took me longer than it should have, but I eventually found myself in Kays. I told the woman, I needed something that not only said “Thank You” but also, “No man has ever had a better woman.” She she showed me a 2 caret diamond ring for about 20 Grand. I didn’t get that. We sat in Kays for almost an hour designing a ring. I’m not going to tell you what I eventually ended up spending on her ring, mostly because I don’t want someone to rob HP, but I will tell you that its one of a kind and says exactly what I needed it to say, “Thank you for loving me, and all that you do. Without you I wouldn’t make it. Without you, I couldn’t get through.” (I just made that up but still). I bought the ring in December, her birthday was in February. I had planned another trip to Montreal. I knew EXACTLY where I wanted to propose. The place where I discovered how grateful and how thankful I was for all I had. Not the materialistic shit, not the cars and the clothes. The place where I discovered how grateful I was for her. A life worth remembering because she was apart of it. So on a cold winter morning in Old Montreal, I got down on one knee in front of the Notre Dame Church, and I looked up at the this beautiful redhead with big beautiful blue eyes and I asked the question that she should’ve heard 3 years earlier, “Heather Lynn Pominville, will you marry me?”