When Australian Peter booked his last minute solo-trip to the USA, he never imagined he’d meet the love of his life Lauren, and that they would be married just a few short years later. This is Peter’s story…
I’d always wanted to go to America and Canada. I was meant to be travelling with a friend, but he pulled out last minute and as a single traveller I was looking for something that offered value for money, was organised and hassle free. I researched Trafalgar’s East Coast USA and Canada trip and went for it as it offered everything I was looking for and more.
On the meet-and-greet cruise tour of the Hudson on our first night, I tapped Lauren on the shoulder and asked her to take my picture in front of the Statue of Liberty. I introduced myself, but Lauren didn’t hear me and promptly went back to snapping pictures!
The next day we sat near each other on the coach, and when we reached the Nurses’ Memorial in Washington DC, we realised we were both nurses and started chatting and trading war stories from our shared careers.
Throughout the tour, we kept talking, laughing and spending time together. Lauren was travelling with her parents and often invited me to join them for breakfast or dinner, and to do things will them on the tour.
After our East Coast and Canada trip, Lauren and her parents were staying in New York for a few days. I was too, and we caught up every day and did lots of sightseeing together. When it came time to say our goodbyes, Lauren was quite emotional as we didn’t know when we’d next see each other. We promised we’d catch up back home in Australia. To make sure we kept our word, Lauren gave me a piece of jewellery to return to me the next time we were together.
After New York, Lauren and her parents headed home, and I flew to the West Coast to meet up with a friend and head on to Hawaii. Lauren and I kept chatting – I sent her pictures of what I was up to and even called her a few times to talk about all the fun things I’d done and seen. It wasn’t until I arrived in Hawaii that I realised I missed Lauren and wished she was with me – this was when I really realised there was a connection between the two of us.
Eight weeks after we first met, I was strolling along the beach in Waikiki, messaging with Lauren, when she first told me she liked me. With butterflies in my stomach, I called her and told her I felt the same.
I’m from Sydney and Lauren was living in Brisbane. When I got home, we were texting, calling and face-timing every day. I happened to have a week of leave I’d booked before I even left for the USA, and decided to use it to visit Brisbane, and planned our very first date.
From then on, we spoke every day on the phone and sent letters to one another. After a year and a half of long distance, Lauren moved to Sydney in January 2016. We moved in together, bought a home, and the dogs to go with it.
On September 8 2018, we got married – we had a very traditional Greek ceremony, as my family are Greek. Watching Lauren walking down the aisle was one of the happiest moments of my life. I couldn’t believe that just a few years beforehand we were two strangers, and as fate would have it, we happened to meet on the other side of the world.
Though we can’t travel at the moment, we’re always planning the next adventure and we’d love to go to Europe next. I want to show Lauren around Greece and the village where my parents are from. We also want to visit Croatia, Russia and some French wineries. We’ll definitely be travelling with Trafalgar again – it offers great value for money, is very organised, hassle free, and the Travel Directors are fantastic – always on hand to answer any questions!
Do you have a Trafalgar travel story you would like to see published on The Real Word? Perhaps you met the love of your life on a tour, retraced your families genealogy or celebrating a special event with us? Whatever it may be, we’d love to hear it. Send your message to firstname.lastname@example.org.