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Princeton senior pops the question

The pond in Central Park might never have been as romantic as it was April 25. A rowboat sat in the middle of the tranquil pond, and in it sat a couple of love birds from Princeton — Ashley Johnson '00 and Jason Harris '00. It was a momentous occasion, for Harris was proposing to the girl whom he had dated since freshman year.

Johnson had always thought it would be romantic to be proposed to on a rowboat and had once casually mentioned it to Harris. He took special note.


Though the couple had already seriously discussed marriage, Johnson was not ready for him to pop the question when he did. "I thought he was going to propose this summer," she said. "He said it would be June at the earliest, then August. I thought, 'Shoot! He keeps moving it!' "

Harris found a red rose along with a note on her door early that morning. Harris wrote that he had planned a romantic day for the two of them in New York. He had drawn a rowboat on the front, hinting at what was to come.

Harris met Johnson on the corner of 59th Street and Fifth Avenue. "She was suspicious and said, 'Your card was pretty mysterious and you must have something planned,' " Harris explained.

"I said I thought we'd walk through the park and take some pictures," he added. "So we were just walking through and taking pictures, and we just happened to come across this little pond with rowboats."

The cunning Harris suggested they rent one.

"We went to this sort of scenic [place], and I reached into my bag to grab the camera to take a picture. But I grabbed the ring instead," Harris said.


Kneeling in the dingy bottom of the boat, Harris popped the question. "It took her a second to compose herself," he said. But her answer was a clear yes.

That memorable occasion was followed by dinner at a restaurant on the water. Harris did not know that Johnson had eaten there during high school and had thought what a perfect place it would be for a wedding proposal.

"We've been together for three-and-a-half years. We met on the third day of freshman year," Harris recalled. "The reason we met is because my older brother and her older sister went here, and before we even got here, they thought we'd be perfect for one another. And as I've gotten to know Ashley, I found that they were right."

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