How We Met
Marius and I met Valentine’s weekend 2016, and I remember it like it was yesterday! I was studying abroad for a semester in Sevilla, Spain, and making friends from all over the world in classes at our university. My roommate was in a tapas cooking class (that I had desperately wanted to get into), and became fast friends with two guys from Germany. They invited her to a house party with other international kids, and she pleaded with me to go with her. I was more interested in going to local bars and flexing my Spanish with cute local boys, so I agreed to go, but on the condition, we would bar hop after the inevitably awkward party.
When we got to the apartment of a Norwegian classmate, Marius happened to answer the door. He had gorgeous blue eyes and the kindest smile, and he was friendly from the first second we met! Marius is one of those people who can make friends with a brick wall, so we instantly connected and found ourselves talking for hours. I thought the language barrier would make conversation difficult, but he spoke so fluently and beautifully. I put videos on Snapchat of him speaking four languages (!!!), and kept telling him how impressed I was with his fluency. We drank too much sangria, laughed too loud, and ended the night with a kiss.
It took a little over a week for us to go on a real date (after days of me trying to get his attention between classes, and a weekend of me coincidentally “showing up” to the club he was at!). A river runs right through the middle of Sevilla, and we met up on a beautiful sunny Wednesday to have cappuccinos by the riverside. It was the most fun first date I could’ve imagined, and I instantly felt comfortable spending hours alone with him. After some more romantic Spanish dates, we found ourselves with a favorite bench to sit on and a routine meeting spot in the middle of the city.
We spent the rest of the semester living it up in our little international fling, and it honestly felt like a movie. Leaving Spain, we planned to break up, but we were already talking about weekly Skype dates, and Marius even mentioned coming to visit me in Texas during my senior year of college. I remember coming home, and my parents telling me to not get my hopes up because it was unrealistic to think we’d last three months apart internationally! But through lots of communication, we made the distance work, and the minute Marius landed in Fort Worth to visit me for three weeks, I knew for sure I was in love.
We’ve been going back and forth, doing extremely long distance ever since – and we’re so ready for it to be over! He’s been to the US 6 times to see me, and I’ve visited him in Germany 5 times. We’re both in grad school, and seeing each other is always tough, but we’ve made some amazing memories in the time we can spend together. Dating for three years at 6000 miles and nine hours apart has been difficult, but there’s no one else I could ever imagine doing this with!
How They Asked
Marius came to visit me in Phoenix in November, and we had been casually planning a trip to the Grand Canyon for a few months. We love taking road trips when we’re in the same country, so nothing was out of the ordinary! We headed out on a Thursday after I finished the class, and drove a couple hours to Flagstaff to spend the night. The next morning, we made the last little drive to the canyon and planned a day of walking, hiking, and sight-seeing.
The Grand Canyon was WAY colder than we both expected, so the trip was a little uncomfortable. But we still spent the day having fun, talking to the tons of other German tourists (what are the odds?) and taking pictures along the rim. All day, Marius kept bringing up this cool spot that he had read about, where we could watch the sunset. He kept hinting that we were on a time crunch, which I think I just attributed to us needing to get to the lookout by sunset.
Marius and I are always barely making it on time whenever we travel – seriously, it’s become such a problem that now it’s just a joke! Whether we’re catching trains in Europe or a movie in the US, we are always barely on time. So of course, we were running late for the sunset. I drove us to a spot where we could park, and it seemed pretty secluded. There was about a 20-minute walk to go before we reached the lookout, and I am not a big hiker. Marius was rushing us, so I was having to jog at times just to keep up with him. A government car passed us on the trail we were on, which I thought was odd…but Marius steered the conversation to stories of him and his best friends from back home.
We reached the end of the trail, and it was the most beautiful view I have ever seen!! It was super intimate too – just us, two park rangers, and a couple German tourists (of course). I took some pictures of Marius, and we chatted with the tourists as we passed them to get to the ledge. After about 30 seconds of watching the sunset, Marius just popped down on one knee! He asked if I would spend my life with him, and it was so sweet and genuine. We hugged and kissed, and I forgot about the ring for a couple minutes, I was so excited! But the ring was perfect, and exactly what I wanted. After I realized what had happened, Marius pointed out that he had asked the rangers to take pictures of us, and that he’d been planning the evening for weeks! It was so thoughtful, and I couldn’t stop crying. Our new tourist friends took some pictures for us as well, and we got to watch the rest of the sunset alone, at the edge of the world, together. Our proposal was simple and perfect, and I could not be more excited to marry my wonderful German!!!