Tracey and Ron
Photography by Alpine Image Co.
“We met at college in September 1993. Ron and I were studying the same thing at Buckinghamshire College in the UK. We sat a desk apart and became friends during our first year. We collaborated on a couple of projects and then “secretly” started going out. At the year-end ball in June next year, we revealed to our friends that we were a couple. After graduating in 1996, we began our careers. Our work took us from London to Singapore and, ultimately, in 2007, to New Zealand, which is now our forever home. Twenty-seven years is already a lifetime to be together, really. Obviously, over that time, we’d talked about getting married a few times before, but there were always other things to consider. To us, the most important thing has always been our unwavering commitment to each other. All our friends and family knew us as a couple, so there was no fundamental need to change anything, so we put it off. Around 2019, we started talking about it seriously again. At the time, the thought of secretly eloping sounded thrilling. It would be different, personal, and surprise and delight our loved ones. We decided that yes, this is it! On the very first day of lockdown, Ron proposed. We’d spent the whole evening talking about what we imagined our wedding would be like and drinking wine. It was lovely. He popped the question in the kitchen – after which came the serious planning. We really wanted to make the day all about us and extremely special. Everything was done in complete secrecy; the only people that knew about our plans were the vendors. We had such fun preparing as we only had to focus on what we wanted. We designed our wedding rings and actually helped make them, which was incredibly meaningful. Inside each ring were inscribed the first lines from a song called ‘Thank You’ by Led Zeppelin that we used to listen to when we first met. Ron also wrote a poem, and with the help of the celebrant, we crafted a very personal ceremony. We let our closest family know the day before we flew to Queenstown. Everyone was utterly blown away – and there were quite a few tears of joy, I can tell you!”