6 years ago I decided that after my 21st and I graduated from university (which happened within 4 days of each other) I would travel the world.
Then one fateful night in October 2009, after going out to meet my sister, something happened. I met a boy.
I warned him when we first started going out that I was going to travel the world. This didn’t seem to deter him.
In March 2010 he started working in Auckland, we continued long distance. He flew he up to explore the city during the school holidays and spent the weekends in Wellington with me.
May 2010, and never forgetting what I told him when we first met, he gave me 2 presents.
1. A trip to Queenstown, somewhere I’d never been before. And
2. A Lonely Planet Britain book, for me to use when I get there.
There was also a question asked around this time, one that required a yes or no answer (nope not that one, that came later)
“If you’re still planning on going to the UK, I’d like to go with you”
So here was a boy, who I had been going out with for 6 months, asking to move across the world with me for an undisclosed period of time. What could I say?
While I know what I did and that was book two tickets leaving for London in October 2010, 1 week before our one year anniversary.
He has been the one who comforted me every time I’ve left my family at the airport.
He has encouraged me to travel and even indulged my random reasons for visiting certain countries, from going to countries ending with is (Austria, Slovakia, Slovenia, Latvia, Estonia…) to visiting places based on a single photo I saw and fell in love with (Whitby I’m looking at you)
He’s the one who holds my hand when I’m nervous about travelling somewhere (Romania), doesn’t say he’s not my husband (Egypt) and reminds me I’ve been through customs 100times before, why would today be the day I’m accused of smuggling drugs.
He puts up with me serenading him in random places (16 going on 17 in Salzburg, it had to be done) and making up stories about weird caravan signs during hikes (Lake Como.)
He’s been in charge of finishing my beer (not that he’s complaining) in Dublin, Munich, Amsterdam (to name a few), and dealt with me being seriously hung over in London, Warwick, Leamington Spa, Bratislava, and most of Croatia,
He’s stood around while I’ve browsed the markets in London, Warwick, Leamington Spa, Istanbul, Brugge (and oh so many more) and whenever I’ve wanted something “so just get it then!”
He has tried to make Christmas special for me knowing how much I’ll miss family at home. From our first white winter Christmas, sledging in Gloucester, to visiting a museum in Cairo, then last year spending it in New York City watching basketball and wondering the streets.
He has put up with the moods, the (rather one sided) arguments, the indecisiveness – and when it comes to food normally all three at once.
He is the boy who earlier this year got down on one knee making sure that Lake Como will always have a place in my heart.
He has helped me to fall in love with travelling, and I can’t imagine having spent the past 5 years any differently. He’s the one I turn to when I get excited over visiting somewhere new. The one I moan to when somewhere doesn’t meet my expectations (Lisbon, I can imagine him muttering) and most importantly he is the one I want to continue sharing these experiences with. Even if we don’t get to see a new country every week, we get to start a new adventure together in New Zealand, and as nervous as I am about this, I am also very excited.
Happy Anniversary Ad