How it All Began
The year was 2016 and the place was Villanova University.
That’s how our story begins.
We met doing something we are both passionate about: supporting a crisis pregnancy center. This local non-profit crisis pregnancy center, A Baby’s Breath, sponsors a 5k every year to generate funds to help women day-in and day-out who are struggling to provide for their children. Angel was actually a volunteer at the center, and I was just a freshman looking to be involved in my community.
Isn’t it so romantic that we met doing something that we love? Well, it would be if I remember meeting her. I swore that the first time I met her was 4 months later in Washington DC, but she proved me wrong with a picture where we’re literally standing next to each other at the run. Oh well.
In January of 2017 we became friends. Or at least I guess you could call it that. My first memory of Angel is from that January day in Washington DC, when I was speechless at how adorable this cute girl was. When the bus got back to Villanova from Washington DC that night, I was so desperate to get her number that I followed her around with a box of Lay’s potato chips for an hour while trying to help her unpack the bus.
I didn’t get her number.
I also didn’t talk to her again for about 6 months. Our paths just didn’t really cross, and I figured that was that. Then, on July 14 of 2017 she commented on one of my pictures on Instagram. I was in Havana at the time, and I posted a picture smoking a cigar in front of the Palace of the Revolution, which is basically Cuba’s White House. She commented “Smoke some Cubans!” and just like that, I was determined to get this girls number. Soon enough, I did.
We talked through the summer and dated for the fall semester, but with our upcoming semesters abroad, the timing just didn’t really work out. It’s pretty hard for a brand new relationship to succeed while one person’s in Italy and the other is in Australia. We “mutually” decided to go our separate ways.
I put quotation marks around the word mutually for a reason. While we had agreed that we’d split up before going abroad, I didn’t think it would actually happen! I thought she’d fall so head over heels for me that she’d pull back on her initial stance and we’d make it work.
We didn’t. She’s a woman of her word.
We didn’t talk much that semester, thanks to me being pouty. But the following summer, now in 2018, we reunited once again in Shanghai, China where we both had summer internships. While Shanghai isn’t usually thought of as a romantic place, to us it will always be the city we truly fell in love. We officially starting dating on July 27 of that summer, and you could say the rest is history, as far as the relationship goes, as we got married on July 3 of 2020 amid a global pandemic. No, coronavirus couldn’t keep us from getting married!
Why we decided to create The Present Perspective
The Present Perspective isn’t really about our love story. It’s about the things that made us fall in love in the first place. Our two greatest passions in life are our faith and traveling. Our Catholic faith has always been very important to each of us, and it has maintained a central place in our relationship since the beginning. And, given that the place we got back together was a 12 hour time difference from the place we met, I guess you could say travel was always a part of us, too.
During the time that we dated, we visited 12 countries together on 4 different continents. Then during our 8-month engagement, we visited another 8 countries. In our 9 months of marriage the number of countries has dropped significantly thanks to the pandemic, but we’re currently in the middle of the largest trip of our lives, as we moved to Mexico a month after our wedding. While we’ve been working on our master’s degrees here in Mexico, we’ve been exploring all that Mexico has to offer, and have been to over half of the states in this magnificent country.
Throughout our travels and our time together we have had some really high moments and some really low life moments. Through it all, we’ve learned that there is no better way to live than by living in the moment and embracing the gifts that we are given each and every day, no matter how big or how small. We decided to create The Present Perspective to challenge ourselves to grow while pursuing the things that we love. While running a travel and lifestyle account may seem like fun and games (which so much of it is) it comes with inherent challenges that need to be faced. I’ve needed to develop my writing and digital marketing skills (hello SEO), Angel taught herself web design and has invested greatly in photography and photo/video editing, we’ve both been learning to code, and most importantly, we’ve learned to support ourselves financially by creating work opportunities for ourselves and following a strict budget.
The Present Perspective is not just our travel and lifestyle feed; it is the avenue that we are using to practice our new skills and better ourselves personally and professionally while continuing our education and growing as a married couple.
Thank you for following us on our journey and supporting all that The Present Perspective stands for. As the famous line from Kung Fu Panda goes, “Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, but today is a present.” Here’s to taking advantage of the only time we’re able to control, and to recognizing what being alive today truly is: the greatest present of all.