Friday, February 7, 2014

How Do Opposites Travel? Do They Attract? YES - But Not Overnight!

by: Mhe-anne L. Ojeda

Photo by Alain Atienza Tagpuno. LDS Manila Temple grounds

My hubby, Red is my first college boyfriend whom I met up again after 20 years of separation. He added me on Facebook on June 1, 2012 while I was healing a broken heart in New Zealand. I have just ended an almost 5 years of beautiful relationship with my singular someone, who is a true-blooded traveler. To overcome being wallowed and bathed in sadness I headed to the advice of travel bloggers: Travel More to stitch my heart together! True enough, New Zealand was the perfect place for a brokenhearted me! It is not only my Dream Destination where time seems to slow down as I lose myself to a vacation mode, but it is also a natural antidepressant, where divine intervention and technology conspire to lead me to my old flame!

I accepted Red friends' request on FB on June 25, 2012. We chatted for 48-hours straight and updated each other on what happened to us during the last twenty (20) years of no communication! 

First Meet Up / First Date - June 29, 2012

Three (3) days after our first contact on FB. Red visited me at home aboard his motorcycle. And since I don't know how to entertain him at home, I suggested that we drive around - Laguna using my Sportivo (since I haven't gotten on a motorcycle!). Sporty, my stuffed toy described the First Saga in Nuvali:
"Then Red came. He is like a knight in shining armor, who had turned my princess' world around and affected me too in a positive way. He is an old flame, who on their first day of meeting after 20 years, has swept her off her feet. He drives and she was inspired to overcome her phobia. Since then, she always look forward to going on a road trip and enjoy eating her favorite dimsum - pork siomai and siopao - while we drive. Because Red's house is in Sta. Rosa Heights (15 minutes from Tagaytay) on Tagaytay-Silang Road, we always passed by NuvaliI was all smiles and can't help telling Sasha how cool it is to have a place like that where eco-living to the highest level is possible. On a personal side, having my caregiver that close felt so good - someone who caress me once in awhile as she giggled seeing the nice view and holding me tight when fear seeps in with Red's driving. It was all good and...It ushered the start of my many travels... my happy, fun, Sporty Chronicles! "
"Out Of The Blue", a song composed by Red for my birthday, further describes our first date. Red has gotten me out of being gloomy or depressed in a rather unexpected time and melted! 

We just knew, without having to say the words, that 
finally we have found that spark that we never lost, but always been looking for.” (Ikaelelo Gaosengwe) (which our blog carnival host Claire finds nakakakilig * wink *wink). 

photography by Alain Atienza Tagpuno
But, in terms of traveling, we were initially clueless that we were at the opposite ends of the pendulum just like our heights lol. Hubby has no passport so he has not been to a single country outside the Philippines. In fact, he has not been anywhere within the country by plane for two (2) decades! In my case, I was counting and taking dozen memorable combo trips around the globe that others could only imagine. I love to travel to many new destinations, meeting new faces, learning various cultures and taking in the pleasures of checking off bucket lists - with my then traveler beau.
Photo by Alain Atienza Tagpuno at Estancia Hotel Resort
So, had the old adage that ‘opposites attract work out happily for us during our first flight as a couple? Yes, it did! but not without much preparation. Read on to see how we did it --

Photo by Alain Atienza Tagpuno

Dating Months - June 30, 2012 - June 11, 2013

Since we have a completely different travel backgrounds, w
e knew that it can be very difficult during our dating period!  So we thought, we should take it slowly and start with the basics before going on a long-haul trip as a couple. We first build on common grounds by finding a similar interest and attitude about traveling, so as not to put the other in situations where we have to act like this and like that – to our annoyance and disgust. Our love for road trips paved the way! I have a car and Raymond loves to drive, so that complements our very different travel status (for want of better term). Our spontaneous and short week-end road trips (no need for overnight stayto Laguna, Tagaytay, Pangasinan, Quezon, Cavite, Pampanga, Tarlac, around the Metro (or just anywhere with a road lol) allow us to satisfy my need to travel and his love for driving. It also let us know each other's quirks while traveling and work out some adjustments after the trip (and before the next weekend). Plus, we were able to hold hands and listen to our favorite tunes as we drive that strengthens our "similarities"!   

see our "peace sign", identical tee-shirt and identical prize?

Getting Hitched Week – June 12, 2013 to June 21, 2013
So when we got engaged on June 12, 2013, (the same date as when we first met each other during an Independence Day rally inside UP Diliman in 1991), we thought  it is the best time to debut with our first flight and long-hauled trip as a couple and celebrate getting hitched! After our series of road trips, we were more than prepared for our week-long travel to Boracay and Bacolod. We knew that he has to carry our stuff while I take care of our travel formalities at the airport or choose a good accommodation while he negotiates for the best transportation options. We totally enjoyed being a couple, clothed in identical shirts and having the same wavelength. We even won in Cebu Pacific's in - flight games and got an identical prize!

Wearing identical clothes everyday while in Boracay! Ask the Koreans why lol

Boracay's Couplehood – June 13, 2013 to June 16, 2013

Because we had a ringless engagement promising each other to continue where we left off 22 years ago, we made sure that everyone notice that we are officially a couple while in Boracay! We have a set of matching outfits to wear daily and have a DIY Prenup Shoot wearing them. It was an idea that helps us see how we are "alike" despite our differences in height (lol), hobbies, interests and attitudes about traveling. We enjoyed helmet diving (both our first time), swimming, sightseeing, eating out and just being together!

together we are one in Bacolod

Bacolod's Couplehood – June 17, 2013 to June 21, 2013
With only one pair of our "his and hers" clothing left in our backpacks, we tried to blend in some way still by wearing something complementary like slippers or socks, and expose ourselves to a variety of new experiences as a new couple. I have been in Bacolod many times when I was single, so for our trip we chose "new" sights like The Mansion and Mambukal. Since the sight is unfamiliar to me as a traveler, my hubby is better able to show his "travel skills" that compensate for things he was not so great at, and vice versa. 

Having experienced only joys in our first travel as a couple, I can see more of us dressing alike and off to some foreign dream destinations. We'll start off - Definitely. Dubai!

This is my contribution to Pinoy Travel Blogger FEBRUARY 2014 BLOG CARNIVAL with the theme " The JOYS AND WOES OF COUPLEHOOD ON THE ROAD" hosted by Claire Madarang of Traveling Light . For previous monthly blog carnival topics, click Estan Cabigas' Langyaw.  


  1. Inspiring! You both guys prove that love comes in the right time. Happy Valentines!

    1. Hello Sky Summer! Thanks for dropping by and checking this post. I'm glad our love story has inspired you. We never expected our paths will ever crossed again, but I guess it has divine intervention! I'm excited to read your post too!

  2. Nice love story, Mhe-Anne. First love never dies ba ang peg? hehe

    1. Thanks Aleah dear. Because it actually happened to me, I am convinced that indeed first love never dies! haha. I'm looking forward to your entry and your compilation for Valentines Day!!

  3. Awwwww, nakakakilig naman Ate Mhe-Anne! :) I'm glad that you've adjusted to each others needs.. and have found common ground later on. Anyhoo.. here's to more "first-times" and of lasting "travel memories" =)

  4. It's very nice to see that you share the same and that you can make it enjoyable for both of you. Congratulations! Hopefully, you'll have many more journeys together.


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