A Japanese man’s heartwarming proposal from 2008 is going viral again online.
In 2008, Yasushi “Yassan” Takahashi, an artist from Saitama, was searching for a special way to propose to his girlfriend, Natsuki, when he came across GPS art and realized it was the perfect idea.
Takahashi then quit his job and embarked on a six-month journey to draw out the words “Marry Me” across Japan.
Takahashi walked most of the 7,163 kilometers (4,451 miles), traveling by bike, ferry, and car for some of the journey.
After arriving home, Takahashi uploaded the data from his GPS to Google Maps, which produced the words, “Marry Me”, in large letters, stretched across Japan.
As a result, he received a “Yes!” from Natsuki and still holds the Guinness World Record for Largest GPS Drawing by an individual.
“I never expected [my proposal] to go viral again,” Takahashi, who is now happily married to Natsuki, told Almost.
Takahashi said that during the trip he did not reveal to Natsuki what he was drawing and was worried that she would find out.
Fortunately she didn’t, and it turned out to be a big surprise.
“I felt the greatest love in the world,” Natsuki told South China Morning Post at the time, according to NDTV.
The couple is still happily married and have two children.
Takahashi said that one of the biggest discoveries during his journey was that there were more unpaved, mountain roads than he had expected.
“Now that Google Street View is available, I don’t think I would have such a hard time,” he said.
His story was shared by multiple meme accounts on Instagram, going viral.
Some people loved the idea.
Others found the six months away from his girlfriend to be too much.
However, Takahashi said the journey towards his goal is what made the six months worth it.
“The road I have taken myself is itself an art form. Just like GPS art,” he said.
Since then, he has continued to create GPS art that he publishes on his website.
He has traveled over 100,000 kilometers around the world to create a GPS art piece reading “PEACE on Earth”.
He is currently working on a GPS art project for Japan’s national rugby team to spell out the team’s slogan as they prepare for the 2023 Rugby World Cup.
“The inspiration [for the “Marry Me”] was a very private theme of a marriage proposal, but it has also become a means to spread world peace and to support national sports teams,” Takahashi said. “I feel that GPS art still has great potential as a means of expression.”
He added that he was looking forward to doing a GPS art trip with his family someday.