A Perfect Match

October 3, 2013

100413_beshertMarla & Neil Markoff

First Date:
May 15, 2009 at the Flying Fish in Old Town Alexandria

Wedding Date:
July 3, 2011

Wedding Venue:
Chizuk Amuno Congregation

Current Residence:
Alexandria, Va.

Favorite Activity:
Hanging out with friends

In October 2010, Neil Markoff suggested to his girlfriend, Marla Wolf, that she dress up for dinner. They were meeting his aunt and uncle in Washington, D.C.

As they walked to the Willard Hotel from the ajacent parking lot, Neil presented Marla with a gift. It was a wrapped CD of love songs. As Marla unwrapped the package, Neil knelt down and asked her to marry him. To their surprise, an audience on a nearby bench clapped after Marla accepted Neil’s proposal.

Instead of proceeding to the hotel restaurant, they climbed into a horse-drawn carriage for a romantic ride.

Afterward, they headed to the restaurant. Because Neil had booked a private room, they were led through the kitchen. Marla called her mom, Donna Wolf, who offered her congratulations and told her daughter she couldn’t wait to see her.

As they approached the back room, Marla smiled, as she saw her mother and father, Bob Wolf, and Neil’s parents, Marcia and Bruce Markoff, through a glass wall.

It was the perfect way to celebrate.

Their pairing was seamless as well.

The father of one of Marla’s closest friends attended dental school with Neil’s father. After trying JDate, speed dating and blind dates, Marla agreed to meet Neil. It was about five weeks until he emailed her, as it was a busy time for him in graduate school.

Quickly, they learned how much they have in common. [They lived a quarter-mile apart in Virginia, shopped at the same grocery store, share their birthday (a year apart), and both work in human resources.]

Their first date was in May 2009 to a sushi restaurant following Marla’s recommendation.

Neil impressed Marla as a sweet, caring guy from the first moment (he opened the car door for her). They shared interesting, fun conversation and learned about their mutual love of family. Both hoped there was more to come.

“I really liked that she was outgoing, she had a personality,” said Neil, 33, human resources director for a commercial real estate company. “That was very important.”

After about six months, they professed their love.

Marla knew he was the one, her “knight in shining armor,” after her apartment flooded, and he swooped in to save her and her belongings.

“I knew I could rely on him,” said Marla, 34, an Owings Mills native and performance specialist for Insperity. “More and more, I knew he was the man I wanted to marry and spend the rest of my life with.”

They were married July 3, 2011 at Chizuk Amuno Congregation. Rabbi Ronald Shulman and Hazzan Emanuel Perlman officiated. They shared the day with 230 friends and family members.

Today, they share even more as Blake joined the family in February.

“Even with parenting, we complement each other very well,” says Marla. “Common interests and values brought us together and as we grew as a couple we realized we were yin and yang.”

Linda L. Esterson is an Owings Mills-based freelance writer. For “Beshert,” call 410-902-2305 or email Linda.Esterson@verizon.net.

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