Ryan Agoncillo and Judy Ann Santos are Now Engaged

(Bakit hindi na kagulat-gulat?)

When news came out about the diamond ring that Judy Ann Santos was wearing, people have already 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 keep on saying, “nag-iipon pa.”

Well, showbiz denizens can now stop guessing as couple Judy Ann Santos and Ryan Agoncillo have finally agreed to YES! magazine’s nagging request for a tell-all interview.

“It’s official, Judy Ann and Ryan are engaged!” shouts the cover of YES! July 2008 issue.

After several convincing, Juday, as what her friends and fans fondly call her, gave YES! the opportunity to be the medium for the announcement of their engagagement. In an 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'”

In this interview, Juday and Ryan also invited their closest friends—actress Beth Tamayo, director Danter Garcia, makeup artist Nonong Geronaga, and showbiz habitué Anna Dasig. The 30-year-old Juday reasoned out, “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. The 29-year-old 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.

Beth recalled, “Si Rye, he first called up Johnny—hindi nga ako. Kasi, nagtatanong siya about diamonds. Parang wala kasing alam si Ryan sa ganyan-ganyan, so humihingi siya ng suggestion kay Johnny.”

When she knew about it, Beth said that she got upset because they were keeping it secret to 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 has chosen and know exact size of Judy Ann’s right ring finger.

First, 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.

Beth related, “‘Yon ‘yong nagbibigay ng diploma ng mga diamonds. Nandoon ‘yong clarity, ‘yong kulay, measurement, et cetera. So, noong tsinek ko, sabi ko, ‘Naku, napakaganda ng gusto mong bilhin. Sa scale na one to ganito, siya ‘yong ganyan. Okey na ‘to, good buy na ‘to.'”
Then, Ryan asked Beth to know the measurement of Juday’s right ring finger. It was a more difficult task for Beth because she should be careful not to give Judy Ann any idea about the plan.

A perfect timing came during a promo tour for Ploning in Iloilo. She took the opportunity when she noticed that the ring on Judy Ann’s right middle finger was a little big for its size.

She narrated, “‘Tapos, siya ang nagtanong sa akin, imbes na ako ang magtatanong sa kanya. Kasi, ise-segue ko sana ‘yon sa akin, ‘Ano ba’ng size mo?’ So, siya ang nagtanong sa akin, ‘Bakit, ano ba ang size mo?’

“Sabi ko, ‘Three and one-third lang. E, ikaw, ano ba’ng size mo?’ Doon ko naipasok. Sabi niya, ‘Dito, [ring finger] five ako, kasi ito [middle finger] six, e.”

After accomplishing her mission, Beth linked the information to Ryan during the press screening of Ploning at the Podium in Ortigas Center, Pasig City.

When all the needed information have been gathered, Ryan already settled the purchasing of 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 on 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 in a three-day vacation at the Antalung Beach Resort, which was actually a surprise birthday gift from her best friend Beth.

Juday and Ryan went to Antalung with Yohan, their three-year-old adopted daughter, and the child’s Yaya Annabelle. However, unknown to Juday, their close friends were also coming over to join them in celebrating her birthday and, of course, the engagement day.

When the group arrived at the resort, they saw Ryan carrying a plank of wood. “E, may cliff din doon,” Beth added. The group thought that Ryan was making his dream proposal to be real.

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.

“Si Rye, patingin-tingin sa relo. Naghihintay na mag-alas-dose or whatever kasi gusto niya saktong birthday ni Juday,” Beth recalled.

In an interview later, Ryan admitted that he really timed it to the last minute, so patiently until it was 12 midnight.

THE MOST-AWAITED MOMENT. When the right moment has come, Ryan kneeled in front of 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 after the proposal?

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 were blinded with tears. “Lahat kami, umiiyak kami ng sabay-sabay.”

THE WEDDING PLANS. After Ryan has already 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 assured, “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…”

Right now, Judy Ann and Ryan are on a vacation in Europe with their friends who were also with them in Antulang. Judy Ann says that it is not their honeymoon yet, rather it is a gift for herself.

The July 2008 issue of YES! is now available at all leading bookstores and magazine stands.

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