There’s a saying that love happens when you least expect it.
For Stefan and Carolini five years ago, it was an ordinary day riding the SeaBus from Waterfront to Lonsdale Quay — a quick, albeit often uneventful, 15-minute trip they’ve made countless times. Unbeknownst to them at the time, it would become anything but. It would be the day they meet.
So naturally, a return to the SeaBus was in the books to pop the question five years later. Stefan reached out to us help him pull off the surprise proposal onboard the 7:02 p.m. sailing from Lonsdale Quay to Waterfront Station on June 17.
He left Carolini a note in their home for her to meet him at the SeaBus terminal because he had something to ask her in an hour. Once onboard the SeaBus, a Marine Attendant made a special announcement for the pair and other SeaBus passengers:
Good evening ladies and gentlemen, I’d like to have your attention for a moment, because we’ve got a special sailing for you tonight. So about 5 years ago, on a lovely summer day, a young man and a young lady met each other for the first time, right here, on the SeaBus.
In fact, they met each other twice that day. Once on the SeaBus to North Vancouver, and then again later that day, on the way back to Vancouver. You could say it was meant to be.
Now, I’d like to tell you that they are still happily together, but it’s been a bit of a rocky road for this couple lately. And that’s why tonight is such a special night.
Because tonight, we are going to find out if the love that once started on a SeaBus ride, is going to last for a lifetime.
Stefan.. You got this!
That’s when Stefan went down on one knee, popped the question and she said yes to a roaring crowd of SeaBus passengers.
Carolini had an inkling something was up, but she didn’t expect it to be onboard the SeaBus.
“As of 5:55 p.m. this afternoon I did [have an idea this was happening] because he sent me a note saying I have something to ask you in an hour,” she says. “But I didn’t think it was going to be at the SeaBus, but I thought it was going to be outside the SeaBus.”
Instead she was surprised by friends outside the SeaBus.
It’s the latest chapter in an exciting romance that started on the SeaBus when they locked eyes while on their way to North Vancouver with their bikes.
Although Stefan and Carolini had an instant attraction for each other, neither were eager to break unwritten golden rule of transit: don’t talk to fellow riders. It was destined be another one of those moments that we look back on at the end of our day, smile and forget the following day.
“I had an instant attraction to him and I was like, ‘Well, you know, whatever. He’s just another guy in the crowd, right? Never mind,'” recalls Carolini. Both went their separate ways without speaking to each other.
But there seemed to be a supernatural force that wanted to bring them together.
“And then on the same night, when we came back, we were on the same SeaBus again,” says Stefan, “and this time there were a lot less people so it was really easy to pick her out and, and definitely was a lot of eye contact between the two of us.”
Still, neither were quite ready to strike up a conversation.
Once the SeaBus arrived at Waterfront, they separately made their way to the elevators to exit the SeaBus terminal. Bikes are not allowed on the escalators, so the only way to exit is using the elevators.
Carolini made sure Stefan was following her towards the elevator, but Stefan was just a step behind and he almost missed the elevator. The doors were about to close, but another person in the elevator saw he was coming and they stuck their hand out to keep the doors from closing so Stefan could get into the elevator. To his surprise, Carolini was in the elevator as well.
“This becomes really awkward because we’ve been checking each other out for a long time and there’s a bunch of strangers in the elevator,” Stefan says. “It’s also not the best location to spark a conversation. And then we kind of lost each other because I think I actually took the stairs to the SkyTrain platform and she took the elevator down.”
Somehow they found each other again on the SkyTrain platform.
Recognizing there may not be anymore chances, Carolini was ready to strike up a conversation, but just as she was ready to, the SkyTrain arrives. One car stops in front of her and the other stops in front of Stefan.
Get into the wrong car and they’d never see each other again. This was their last chance to talk to each other.
“Just go through the door and you’ll never see him again, right?” says Carolini. “Last minute was like, ‘Oh, I can’t,’ so I turned around and I went into the door behind him. And that’s when he looked at me and then he started talking to me.”
And the rest, as they say, is history.
There were four chances where they could have missed each other on that day, but they found each other each time. Was it fate?
“A hundred per cent,” says Carolini. “I think so. I think it was meant to be.”
Stefan and Carolini are the latest pair to find love on transit.
Asked to inspire people to find love, Carolini says, “Don’t be afraid to be yourself.”
And Stefan says, “You’ll find it in the most unexpected places and public transport is included.”