When news came out about the diamond ring that Judy Ann Santos was wearing, people speculated that it was not just a birthday gift from her boyfriend of three years, Ryan Agoncillo. In fact, some thought that it was already an engagement ring. But both Judy Ann and Ryan kept mum about it. Instead, they just kept on saying, "Nag-iipon pa." (Click here to read related article)
Well, showbiz denizens can now stop guessing. Judy Ann Santos and Ryan Agoncillo finally agreed to YES! magazine's nagging request for a tell-all interview.
Juday gave YES! the privilege to announce their engagagement. "It's official, Judy Ann and Ryan are engaged!" shouts the cover of its July 2008 issue.
In her interview with YES! associate editor Anna Pingol, the young superstar hoped that her friends in media will understand her decision to talk to YES! first.
"Feeling ko, moment ko 'to, time ko 'to. Gusto ko, isa na lang ang babasahin ng mga tao. Doon nila malalaman lahat ng detalye. Hindi ko na uulitin, para hindi na rin malabsak, kasi ninanamnam ko pa, e. Kasi may tendency ako na pag inulit ko nang inulit, naano na ako, e—'yong, ‘Wala na bang ibang tanong'"
Juday and Ryan invited their closest friends—actress Beth Tamayo, director Dante Garcia, makeup artist Nonong Geronaga, and showbiz habitué Anna Dasig. Juday explained, "Kasi sila ang mas nakakaalam ng mga bagay-bagay bago 'yong gabing 'yon [proposal]."
Now, PEP gives you some of the exciting parts of the engagement story that was held on the first few minutes of Judy Ann's 30th birthday last May 11, 2008 at the Antulang Beach Resort in Dumaguete City, Negros Oriental.
THE PRECIOUS DIAMOND RING. Ryan admitted that he really sought the help of Juday's best friend, Beth, and her husband, Chinese businessman Johnny Wong, in obtaining the controversial diamond ring for Judy Ann.
When she knew about it, Beth said that she got upset because they were keeping it a secret from her. "Kasi, feeling ko, asawa naman kita, di sana niligwak mo na sa akin. E, ang bilin kasi ni Rye, kahit sa akin, 'wag sasabihin."
Later on, Ryan realized that he also needed the help of Beth—assess the quality of the diamond he had chosen and know the exact size of Judy Ann's right ring finger.
Ryan called Beth to make sure that the ring he wanted was a good buy. After he gave the specs, Beth referred to a G.I.A. (Gemological Institute of America) paper that was included in one of her rings.
When all the needed information was gathered, Ryan purchased the ring in Hong Kong with the help of Johnny's Hong Kong-based cousin, Cindy Kung. When it arrived in Manila, Beth kept the ring until the day Ryan proposed to Juday.
Ryan explained, "Hindi ko muna siya hinawakan, kasi baka hindi ako makatiis, e. Parang at any given moment, nasa highway kami, nagmamaneho, papunta kung saan, maisip ko na, ‘Yayain ko na 'tong magpakasal!' Ganoon na, e."
THE SECRET PLAN. Ryan kept everything about his plans for the proposal to himself. Even their close friends had no idea how he was going to propose to his girlfriend.
However, Ryan gave a slight hint about it during a dinner with friends. Out of nowhere, he talked about his dream proposal. Beth remembered Ryan describing, "Tipong nasa cliff, 'tapos, magpapagawa daw siya ng chapel na puro pillars, ganyan-ganyan. 'Tapos, nakalagay lang sa isang plank ng kahoy yung date, 'tapos 'yong date, 'tapos 'yong pangalan ng babaeng pagpoproposan niya at saan siya nag-propose."
After a few days, Judy Ann was set to celebrate her birthday during a three-day vacation at the Antalung Beach Resort, which was actually a surprise birthday gift from her best friend Beth.
In the early evening of May 10, everybody started to party in time for welcoming the first hour of Juday's May 11 birthday. They had no idea about how Ryan would propose that night.
THE MOST-AWAITED MOMENT. When the right moment came, Ryan went down on his knees before Judy Ann, uttering these exact words: "Will you marry me?"
Then, he remembered exactly how he felt at that exact moment. Ryan said, "Nakakatawa, e. Alam mo, ang daming nagsasalita, e. Noong nilabas ko na 'yong singsing, ang daming nagsasalita. Pero 'yong naririnig ko lang, parang, ‘Nyowowo' [mimicking the garbled sound from a tape recorder being played when the battery is low]."
What was Juday's reaction?
She answered, "Ang una kong sinabi actually, no'ng 'binigay niya 'yong singsing, ‘Seryoso ka ba?'"
Later on, she finally replied, "‘Of course!' Dapat ang sasabihin ko, ‘Of course! Absolutely!' Pero hindi ko nagawa. ‘Of course lang ang lumabas sa bibig ko.'
During this moment, Beth said, everyone was blinded with tears. "Lahat kami, umiiyak kami nang sabay-sabay."
THE WEDDING PLANS. Now that Ryan has asked the most-awaited question in his relationship with Juday, their followers are now asking: When is the wedding?
Judy Ann admitted that they have no definite plans yet. In fact, she said in the interview, "Baka nga long engagement 'to, e. Kasi magpaplano din muna kami, siyempre. 'Yon naman ang pinag-usapan namin. Bahay muna, then, ano. Madali na din naman kasi 'yong kasal. One day lang 'yon."
The only thing that is definite about the wedding is that it's going to be a simple celebration.
Ryan said, "Very simple. Very simple. Do'n kami swak din. Kaya ano, e... Wala pa. Wala pa. Basta definitely, simple siya. And then, it's gonna be very private and solemn."
Judy Ann added, "Simple lang. At ako ang masusunod..."
Ryan has just returned from a vacation in Europe with Judy Ann and some of their friends who were also with them in Antulang. Judy Ann, who chose to stay there, says that it is not their honeymoon yet, rather it is a gift for herself.
The July 2008 issue of YES! has the full details of Juday and Ryan's engagement from beginning to end. YES! is now available at all leading bookstores and magazine stands.