New Zealander Builds Igloo to Win Girlfriend's Hand

Daniel Gray probably didn't expect to build an igloo to win his girlfriend's hand. During a five-week stay in Canada to visit his girlfriend, Kathleen Starrie, Starrie's mom told him he had to if he wanted to be with her. Gray thought the idea was brilliant, albeit a way to keep him away from her daughter "in some respect," he told Global Edmonton.

"I wanted to keep him occupied, not with my daughter necessarily. I wanted to keep him busy with something else," Starrie's mother Brigid Burton said with a laugh, "I didn't want (Dan) to just be twiddling his thumbs while he's here in Canada so I thought, this needs to be something that's got some meat to it."

Also laughing at her mother's proposition for Gray, Kathleen said this was "pretty typical" and "not presented as something optional."

According to Global Edmonton, Burton had been preparing for the igloo's construction months before Gray's anticipated arrival in January. She started collecting hundreds of milk and juice cartons in October and filled them with colored water. Construction began shortly after Gray arrived.

Gray and Starrie worked for two hour intervals, breaking to go inside to warm up in between shifts. "We kind of prepared well and went to the store and got some toe warmers and hand warmers and all of that and just dressed warmly." Well, I guess you'd have to in -25 degree weather.

It started out as a tedious job, but soon motivation grew like a down-hill bound snowball. "Once I started building it, it was something I just really wanted to finish, because you can't just leave something like that unfinished," said Gray.

At first, Gray thought the best way to build the igloo would be to cut the blocks to a shape that would connect them all together precisely as a puzzle. Later, he discovered a better way to make them fit: snowcrete. "(It) is just snow and water but, it sticks really well to the ice," Gray said, "The snowcrete just shaped and moulded however you wanted so it made it possible."

Even with the snowcrete, Burton was surprised at how big the project ended up being. "I thought we'd just take the bricks of ice and just kind of, almost throw them out there and make an igloo," Burton said with a hearty laugh."(It was) a lot more difficult, truly."

Nevertheless, Gray followed through on Burton's deal. "(I said) to Dan, you know if you want my daughter's hand you have to complete this, and he did it!" Burton added.

The couple are not looking to tie the knot anytime soon, though. They feel that for now, they're too young. "We're pretty happy to wait a while," Starrie said.

In the meantime, they can enjoy the kaleidoscopic love hut they created together.

Photos via: imgur.com

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