Prologue – Buenos Aires/NYC
Twenty years ago, I knew this guy named Pablo, back in Buenos Aires. About five years ago, we reconnected on facebook, chatted a bit, we were now both runners, and he wanted his friend/coach Juan and I to be facebook friends too, for some reason, I think it was because Juan was coming to NYC and might want to ask me where to do some shopping for sports stuff. Ok.
Chapter 1 – Buenos Aires/NYC
Juan and I were facebook friends. For YEARS. He was really annoying and pushy and I was very close to defriending him a few times, and I told him so. As soon as I’d post something running related, he’d suggest it was time for me to do a triathlon (what he was doing). When I’d mention an ultra, he’d elevate it to an ironman. All quite competitive and obnoxious for someone like me who thinks running should be fun. He was too blunt and all up in my face (I didn’t realize at the time that, ehem, I am like that too). He was married and I was in a relationship so there was never any interesting banter either. Truth: I couldn’t stand him at all. For years.
Chapter 2 – Buenos Aires
I went to Buenos Aires this past December, just like every year, and forgot to register online for the 5 miler I do there. When I showed up to register, someone starts talking to me in English. It was Juan. I had never met him before so I didn’t recognize him at all. It took me about 2 minutes to figure out who he was. We talked for 5 minutes, I was in a rush to get to my lunch plans, and he made sure to tell me, twice, that he was separated now and that we’d run the race together. He then left with a girl, ha.
We met the day after for dessert: it lasted 5 hours. We did the race together the next day and hung out after. It was all very friendly and nothing else, I was leaving in a few days after all; he doesn’t date and I don’t like complicated.
We met again for dessert the day before I was leaving Buenos Aires, and we spent over 8 hours, sitting in the same table, eating and talking. If you know me, you know I get bored easily. This was really weird. Still, of course, nothing happened.
Sunday I am leaving, and all of a sudden, he says he’s coming to the airport to stop me. I obviously told him not to. He then sent me a link to change my ticket date. Crazy. And, I couldn’t… work stuff.
Chapter 3 – Buenos Aires/NYC
Back in NYC, early January, and with a week to go to Bermuda. He left for Chile for his half-ironman. Come to Chile, he said, Come to Bermuda, I said, we tried, couldn’t make it happen. We decided we’d meet up soon. Where/When? We settled on NYC, for the week of Valentine’s day, just a few weeks away. Things started moving really fast.
We would half the day messaging, and the other half super distracted looking at the ceiling, acting like 14 year olds, and 2 to 4 hours on the phone every night. Seriously: teenagers. I lost interest in stuff, he lost his mind.
Chapter 4 – NYC
As soon he was ready to board, a megasnowstorm hits nyc, just to add a bit more drama to this story… He eventually made it, after 29 hours of travel. We almost missed each other at the airport. We had a whole week for each other. I took a week off work, he’d be staying with me.. If the point was to get to know each other, well, we’d be right on top of each other all the time!
We went everywhere. We did our runs together, we went out eating, we did some shopping, a bit of sightseeing, a bit of very romantic nyc walks in the park, really a bit of everything and then, 5 days after he got there, he changed his tkt and stayed an extra week. We had an amazing time together.
Chapter 5 – Buenos Aires/NYC –again
He had to leave. There was some major drama going on in Buenos Aires. Crazy stuff.
We missed each other ridiculously. Back to hours messaging and on the phone. It’s so wild to be so far apart for someone you just met. And even crazier to feel like that, when, mostly both of us had never been the lovey-dovey type.
I kept thinking we’d be ok, but some days it really got to me. I am not built for long distance relationships, or waiting. The clock was ticking, and we had to get things moving. Decisions were made.
Chapter 6 -NYC
He sold his love (his bike!), got a divorce (he was separated), got rid of everything, said sad goodbyes to his puppies, and in just a few weeks, by the end of March, he was back in NYC. To stay. Completely uprooted just 3 months after we first met. That is completely crazy, and we both know it.
He used to train over 4 hours every day and he hadn’t taken a day off in years; now, he hasn’t started back yet (needs to buy a bike, etc!), lots of sacrifices and change. I feel really lucky that he still says it was all worth it.
It’s now 6 months since we first met, and every day seems better than the last, even though we don’t understand how things like these could happen. He’s left a lot (all!) behind, quite quickly, we both adjusted really fast to each other. They say when you know, you know, and I am not sure that is true, but that is what it feels like. It’s completely ridiculous -we are almost never apart: we live in a studio apartment (for now), and we even go the bathroom together to brush our teeth!!- but it works.
Running, eventually, does it’s thing: magic.
— After this:
8/21 Running Proposal
9/3 PR Wedding!