When Dave Cross returned from a stroll with his dog, he couldn’t wait to tell his wife what he saw.
“He said, ‘You’re not going to believe what’s down by the beach,’” Patty Cross said.
The North Whidbey Island couple, who will celebrate their 37th wedding anniversary in May, was awed by a romantic message in the sand.
Etched in a bluff along the beach east of Oak Harbor was an elaborate marriage proposal written in pink and light blue surrounded by 12 multi-color roses. It read: “ALLIE, WILL YOU MARRY ME?”
The discovery came just days before Valentine’s Day last month, and has left the Mariners Cove community buzzing to uncover answers to two specific questions:
Who is the couple and did she say yes?
“He had colored each letter so it would stand out a little bit,” Patty said.
“This was some serious time that he took. He took real roses and lined the three sides of it.”
The Cross’s recently returned from a trip out of state only to learn that the answers to those questions are still a mystery.
“We are very curious,” Patty said.
“We’re probably 70 percent retired up here. We have a few young couples in the cove, not that many. We’re all very close and all very curious.”
Despite the recent winds and rain, the artsy proposal can still be seen etched in the bluff, though the roses have blown away.
The thought and effort behind the proposal, however, will take longer to disappear.
“It definitely brought back some of the romance,” Patty said.