Hello, this is Ben!
Because it’s February and some of the books I teach out of have Valentine’s related material, I got to thinking about unusual love stories and realized that most people go through a lot of crazy things in their lives, especially relating to love and romance. We’re no exception.
Whenever someone asks us how we met, we always look at each other and say “We met in Montana, but it’s a very long story.” There’s not any kind of simple answer.
We did meet in Montana. It was summer and I had just graduated from university and as part of her degree in tourism & hospitality, Katie came to work at a hotel in my university’s town. That seems normal enough, but it also wasn’t the first time she had been there. She had also come all the way from Russia the previous summer and we’d never met, so it was a lucky second chance. We met through a mutual friend and we were friends immediately, but we never dated. I liked her a lot but never admitted it.
She went back to Russia and I decided to go to Korea to teach. Two of my friends from college also went to Korea. Because she loved traveling and had an opportunity, Katie came to visit us in April 2010. She and I had written a few emails back and forth and I was really excited to see her when she came, but I didn’t expect to feel the way I did the moment I saw her.
I remember hearing and disbelieving stories about a “lightning bolt” feeling that people had when they realized that they were meant to be with somebody, that all of the sudden, love struck them. That’s absolutely how I felt. She was only in Korea for a couple of weeks, but somehow I had come to know that she was the most important person I had ever met. We wrote back and forth after she went home and decided I would come and visit her in Russia the next summer in July.
We spent a week together in Moscow and then had to wait until Christmas to see each other again. We spent Christmas and New Years in Barcelona and I planned to come to Russia again after I finished my teaching contract in the spring. It was really hard to be apart, we wrote each other every day and talked through Skype a lot.
Thinking back, I still can’t believe we went through such a long period of distance and I’m so happy we’re together now. We were apart from May-July, August-December and then finally January-April. On April 1st, 2011, I left Korea for the last time and came to Moscow.
We celebrated her birthday on the 3rd and then took a trip to Europe for a month with my parents. Near the very end of the trip, when we were in Stockholm, I proposed and she said “Yes… eventually.” And the rest is history. We started this blog after we got back from Europe!