His way with words won her hand

Just Married

Carrie Carson and Sean Goldrick

October 27, 2002|By Molly Knight | Molly Knight,Sun Staff

A voluminous vocabulary book. It wasn't exactly the kind of gift Carrie Carson was expecting from her boyfriend, Sean Goldrick, on their second Christmas together. But, when Sean presented the book to her last December in front of about 40 guests at a holiday party in Baltimore, Carrie feigned excitement.

"Sean and I have this joke about the way I use big words," said Carrie, 36. "But I was reading this vocabulary book and thinking to myself, 'This is a really weird gift.' " It only got stran-ger. Flipping through the book's some 1,200 pages, Carrie noticed Sean had underlined certain words, which he asked her to read out loud.

The first word: auspicious.

"If you met someone at a party like Sean Goldrick [Sean had written his name here] it would be auspicious," read Carrie.

The second word: refulgent.

"Shiny, brilliant light," she read. "At this point, my heart started to beat faster," said Carrie. "I knew he was up to something."

She flipped to the end of the book and found the pages carved out in a box-shaped hole. In the hole was a ring -- one topped with a bluish-colored tanzanite stone that Sean's parents had bought in Nairobi, Kenya. "I was so shocked, all I could do was ask him if he was serious," said Carrie. "Then, of course, I said I'd marry him."

It had been almost two years since the couple met at a party in San Francisco, where they both live and work -- Sean at the Dutch bank ABN-AMRO and Carrie at T. Rowe Price. Neither one of them had wanted to attend that party.

But when Carrie arrived, she immediately noticed a good-looking stranger across the room. Sean, who described Carrie as a Courtney Cox look-alike (the dark-haired star of Friends), returned her stare. "It was kind of love at first sight," said Sean, 31. "We met, and then we talked all night."

After the party, Sean walked Carrie to her car and asked for her phone number. The next day, he called to ask her out. On their first date, they dyed Easter eggs. "It was definitely an unusual date," said Carrie. "But I'd planned to dye them with people at my office and thought it would be fun. I didn't really expect him to take me up on it."

Although his friends laughed about his first date with Carrie, Sean said he is attracted by her whimsical spirit. "Carrie is really spunky," he said. "She's willing to try anything, even if it's a total surprise or out of the norm."

"Sean has brought the spontaneous side of me out," said Carrie. "I trust any idea he puts on the table. With him it's always just one more adventure."

Carrie and Sean were married on Sept. 28, a crisp fall day, at the Church of the Redeemer in Baltimore. The ceremony was followed by a reception at the Maryland Club.

After their wedding, Sean surprised Carrie with a honeymoon to the Hawaiian island of Kauai, where they sunned on a deserted beach, sipped umbrella drinks by the pool and, on a whim, took a helicopter ride up to the smoking crater of a volcano.

When asked what word she would use to describe their relationship, Carrie didn't come up with anything big. "Perfect," she said. "That's just what it is."

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