When Paula Ronald first set eyes on Perry Ehses, she knew he was the one.
It was six years ago, when Ronald was working as a parking commissioner. She was walking along Pandora Avenue and Douglas Street and saw Ehses, who was working with the City of Victoria in graffiti removal and sign maintenance, pass her in a truck while eating an apple.
“He was like a magnet. It was like ‘I need to know that person’,” Ronald said.
She always saw him travelling in his truck or near City Hall, but was too nervous to approach him and strike up a conversation.
Shortly after, Ronald began working at the City of Victoria as a building service worker, when she crossed paths with Ehses again. This time, she worked up the courage to ask him out.
On their first date, the duo went to a hockey game and have been inseparable ever since.
“It felt like we had been best friends all along, there was no uncomfortableness and that’s how I knew he was the one,” Ronald said. “We’re best friends.”
“There was something really special about her,” he said.
Last Friday, the two city workers said their I dos in front of dozens of family, friends, co-workers, mayor and some councillors in the council chambers. They are the first couple ever to be married at City Hall.
According to Ehses and Ronald, getting married at the place they both work and love was a no brainer.
“We are city workers and we’re very proud of working for the city and we take pride in working at City Hall,” said Ronald, now Ronald-Ehses. “When the opportunity came up to get married together at City Hall, we jumped on it. It was surreal.”
Mayor Lisa Helps said this was the first of many marriages to come at City Hall.
“It’s great to have City Hall welcome weddings. This is the first one and we hope it will be the first of many,” Helps said, adding there are three other weddings also scheduled as part of the pilot project this year. “If it goes well, City Hall is open for weddings . . . Today is a historic moment.”
As for Ehses and Ronald-Ehses, though there is no honeymoon planned, they just bought a house in Esquimalt.