Let's hazard a guess: Most couples thinking about a venue to pop the question do not consider McDonald's.
Cherag Selhi bucked the trend.
The Arlington High School grad who grew up in East Arlington has also grown up at the fast-food restaurant chain. Now the operator of five Boston-area McDonald's, he told YourArlington what drew him to find romance in french fries.
The 29-year-old wrote that he and and his fiancée, Kirti Bhagria, 28, “met some time ago and have very similar upbringings. We both come from a place where family is first, and supporting those close [to us] is a driver for success.”
He took her to the John F. Kennedy Library on Aug. 21, “where she thought we just had a photo shoot planned for the morning. After that, I told her that our second stop for pictures would be at Fan Pier in Boston's Seaport.”
Once there, Kirti had no idea what would happen next: The photographer turned her around, and there was Cherag, down on one knee to ask her to marry.
“Once she said yes, she didn't know that our next stop would be to share the world-famous McDonald's fries.
“More important than the fries is the location -- 14 McGrath Highway in Somerville -- a significant place for me my entire life. It's where my father, Vijay Selhi, began his journey in 1984 with the Golden Arches.
“It was also the first place my brother, Anurag Selhi, and I both worked when we were young. It has been a restaurant that has provided hundreds of people opportunities to start their lives in America -- a place of assistance to others, which is what defines success to me.
“The memories my brother and I share and what we have learned about honest, hard and loyal work have all come from this location. It was essential for me to bring Kirti here after the proposal, with everything this place has been to me and my family and everything that started there for us. I wanted to start my and Kirti's journey there as well.”
Cherag operates McDonald's at:
- 718 American Legion Highway, Roslindale;
- 1650 VFW Parkway, West Roxbury;
- 360 Western Ave., Brighton;
- 540 Commonwealth Ave., Boston; and
- 472 Broadway, Chelsea.
Asked about the McDonald's proposed in Arlington in the early 1990s, whose establishment residents opposed, he wrote:
“I did know about this. My thoughts are that times are different. McDonald's is where families get together, kids have a hangout after school and a place of work opportunity as a first job or lifelong career. I would love a McDonald's to come to Arlington, as it would be an excellent addition to the town.
“McDonald's has been a massive part of my life, alongside my family. I'm so appreciative of all the opportunities it has provided, not just for myself and my family, but so many others. It has guided me to become a leader, an involved community member and somebody who can be compassionate toward others.”
May this lead to a Mcmarriage made in heaven.
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