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Love That Crosses Borders: Andi of MyBeautifulAdventures.com

Andi and I share a love for travel, all things Spanish, and writing about our adventures. She’s engaged to an Argentine named Lucas and they’re set to get married in May in a dreamy destination wedding in Buenos Aires. Here’s her lovely love-story :)

Did you set off on your travels hoping to find foreign love…or did it find you?
Actually, the opposite! I was traveling to try and heal my broken heart. I had just ended a 6 year relationship with a man that I had been engaged to and was experiencing a lot of heartache. The last thing on my mind was meeting someone and falling in love with them. So, I guess you could say love found me.

So…how did you two meet?
At a bar/club in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Our eyes met from across the room and we smiled at each other. I whispered to my girlfriend that I thought he was the most beautiful man I had ever seen and the next thing I knew he was standing next to me with a glass of champagne.



What was your first impression of him?
Well, his accent was ridiculously sexy, so he could have been saying anything and I would have thought he was interesting! Having said that, I found him to be super charming and friendly and not in a cheesy ‘Latin Lover’ stereotypical way.

Initially, did you primarily communicate in English, or in his native language? What about now?
At first it was Spanglish (definitely more English than Spanish though). Then I started taking Spanish classes, while his English seemed to become fluent overnight, thus we took turns practicing each others language. When we made the decision that he would be moving here, we decided that it was best that we only speak in English in order to prepare him for the States. I still continue to practice Spanish, but with my other Latin friends.



How has dating someone from a different culture changed you as a person?
Well, I now know an entirely different culture, one in which I absolutely adore. I have tried to adapt the parts of his culture that mean the most to me into my culture. It makes for an interesting life, this blend that I have created! Though my friends think I am bit crazy when I try to kiss them all the time!

What is the most difficult thing that comes with dating someone from a different country/culture?
There are a lot of “lost in translation” moments that can be very frustrating. Sometimes we just do not get each other at all and we have learned to become okay with that. I think our biggest difference is the pace in which we run our lives. He is used to a much more relaxed and laid back lifestyle, where I am used to getting things done as fast as possible. We do our best to meet in the middle and I find that our influence on each other has helped us both become better people.


In terms of dating, flirting, etc. what makes the men from your significant other’s country different from your home country?
I love how Argentine men wine and dine their women. I feel like a lot of American men have no idea about the art of romance. I also enjoy how easy it is for Argentine men to say sweet nothings; Spanish is such a romantic language and the men definitely use that to their advantage.

What do you believe makes a relationship between two people from two different parts of the world work?
Communication is the key. That is one of the things that I have treasured from being in a long distance relationship, it has forced us to communicate in a very deep and meaningful way. We probably communicate better than most couples who live in the same house. I also think it is important that you teach your partner about your culture as much as possible, so that there are fewer “lost in translation” moments.



What has being in a relationship with someone from another country taught you?
I think the #1 thing it has taught me is that I am just not cut out to date American men (I find them to be quite boring!) In all seriousness, I already knew before I met my partner that I was enchanted with the Latin culture, but now I know that I want it to be a big part of the rest of my life.

And what is the absolute best part of being in love with a man from a foreign land?
I feel like there is always going to be an element of exoticism, because I will always be learning about my partner’s culture. Plus, it means lots and lots of trips to Argentina and hopefully one day a second home there.

Follow the rest of Andi’s adventures here and on Twitter here.

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Love That Crosses Borders: Annie of WaywardTraveller.com

Annie and I went to the same university (GO DAWGS!) and graduated the same year, but actually met through the wonders of Twitter and soon realized we had a lot in common. Annie is also enjoying the pleasures that come along with living in a Mediterranean country and has been living in Florence, Italy for the past year with her Italian boyfriend. Here’s her love-story:

Did you set off on your travels hoping to find foreign love…or did it find you?
That’s a funny story really. I was studying in Australia and I had already met a couple of sexy Aussies in Canada so I assumed that I wouldn’t be hard pressed in their homeland! I want to say I wasn’t openly looking for someone but I guess that would just be lying. I truly was not looking for an Italian though! He found me all on his own and I even tried to dissuade him!

So…how did you two meet?
Lorenzo was my friend’s roommate in Sydney and on St. Patrick’s Day we all went out together. While I actually met him at his house, I didn’t remember him when he approached me at the bar later that night!

What was your first impression of him?

Once I realized he wasn’t some random creeper I just chatted with him; I figured he was just another awesome new friend! It wasn’t until later in the night that I started thinking he was also pretty cute! I soon forgot him until the next morning when everyone started making snarky comments about the two of us talking all night.



Initially, did you primarily communicate in English, or in his native language? What about now?

We spoke in English, always. We were in Australia and he was there to learn the language, plus all of our friends spoke in English. Most of our friends had a really hard time understanding him at the time, but I think he and I have more problems now than we did back then! I was his go-to for comfort when it came to speaking English.

Now that we are in Italy we have tried to designate ‘Italian days’ but it doesn’t usually last a whole day…mostly his fault!

How has dating someone from a different culture changed you as a person?
That’s a tough question. I’ve had to really confront myself and realize that even though I’m open to learning things, I wasn’t necessarily as open-minded as I originally thought. I don’t know if it comes from his general culture as much as the culture of family but I’ve learned from him to be more conscious of others and more laid-back.



What is the most difficult thing that comes with dating someone from a different country/culture?

The stupid little thing that we get most frustrated about is not being able to understand each other when we speak. He doesn’t enunciate at all, which makes it difficult for anyone to understand him in English and I tend to get carried away and talk too fast and he loses the conversation.

For the most part I don’t find the Italian culture drastically different in ways that aren’t easy to adjust to (for example religion or what is socially acceptable for women). It is also nice to know that Italians are open-minded enough to embrace the differences between Italian women and American ones, I never feel that I need to match my Italian counterparts if it doesn’t fit with my personality.

Also, I’m a pretty low key girl so I usually don’t even straighten my hair. Lorenzo straightens and gels his and has plenty more grooming practices. Not only do I have to wait for him to get ready to go out, then I have to risk that he might just look better too!

In terms of dating, flirting, etc. what makes the men from your significant other’s country different from your home country?

There is a really big difference from Italian men and American men, there is also a big difference between how flirting Italians act versus how your boyfriend acts.

First of all, if you don’t know a man there is always that “Ciao Bella” phase where they’ll literally follow you around trying to talk to you and try to play up their ‘Latin Lover’ stereotype.

As far as being in a relationship, from the beginning Lorenzo was more receptive to emotion and more persistent if he sensed there was an issue. Most American men I know ignore any uncomfortable situation, very often unfortunately, to the point that a relationship or friendship simply fizzles out.

I think the problem that American girls might run into is not realizing that Italians talk a lot, so sometimes they say something even if they aren’t sure they mean it and they act tougher than they are.

What do you believe makes a relationship between two people from two different parts of the world work?
One of our favorite TV shows gave us a good line, “we have the same dream”. We actually talked about that and I think that is the key to any relationship. Of course there are parts of your dream that can be compromised and flexible but the ultimate dream has to be the same, otherwise you are working toward different things and will tear yourselves apart. If you are facing uprooting your entire life to meet someone halfway around the world you have to be sure you’ll both be happy with the situation.

Culturally, you must be open-minded. You must attempt to understand the culture and why that person has lived the life that they have. And of course you must be flexible!

What has being in a relationship with someone from another country taught you? About yourself, the culture, the language, etc.
Lorenzo lives his life bi-lingually and that is very inspiring to me. Although it’s not always easy he can almost automatically change his language depending on who he is speaking to. I have been particularly lazy learning Italian and I think it’s easy for an English-speaker to avoid learning a new language but that doesn’t mean they should! Take any European as an example and they are most likely at least partially able to speak English on top of their native language.

Italians also have a very strong connection to their families and their home. Even if an Italian chooses to travel or leave home completely they never lose their devotion. I have learned to be proud of where I come from and prioritize my relationships with my family since I have been living in Italy.

And what is the absolute best part of being in love with a man from a foreign land?
I have to choose just one thing! I mean besides all the mushy stuff that I think comes with being in love with anyone, the novelty of it all is pretty fun! Especially when friends and family haven’t met him yet! I get a lot of “oooo you’re boyfriend is Italian? What’s his accent like? Is he tall, dark and handsome?”. It is always fun to play into that!

Follow the rest of Annie’s adventures in Florence at http://www.waywardtraveller.com follow her on Twitter at http://twitter.com/annb04 or visit her Facebook fan page.

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Love That Crosses Borders: Alexis from AlexisInSverige.com

Alexis and I grew up in the same suburb outside of Seattle. We went to junior high and high school together, and then she went off to UNLV to study. We got back in touch when she was making plans to move to Stockholm, Sweden after graduation and it’s been fun to see someone experiencing some of the same exciting changes I did when I moved to Spain. Now happily in Sweden, she’s followed her heart to Magnus; her boyfriend of 5+ years. Here’s their love-story…

Be sure to check back later today for interviews from Annie of WaywardTraveller.com and Andi of MyBeautifulAdventures.com

Did you set off on your travels hoping to find foreign love…or did it find you?

I set off on my travels after meeting foreign love.

So…how did you two meet?

Magnus and I met while we were both in college at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. I was a freshmen and he was a sophomore swimming for the men’s swim team. I moved to Las Vegas a week before school started to get settled in and to do all the freshmen orientation events. I was walking down my dorm hall on the way to a freshmen event and a dorm door was open. I thought I’d ask the girl who lived there if she would like to join me. That’s when I saw and met Magnus. He was friends with the girl living there. I made friends with her pretty fast and she helped Magnus and I meet again. The rest is history.

What was your first impression of him?

When I first saw Magnus he had very blonde hair, blue eyes, an accent and wearing a V-neck shirt. Everything about him looked European (not many guys in the States would wear a V-neck shirt). There was something exotic about him, something I hadn’t seen in other guys (in the US) and that made me want to know more about him.

Initially, did you primarily communicate in English, or in his native language? What about now?

Since Magnus and I met in the United States and he was fluent in English, that’s how we communicate. Since my move to Stockholm in July, I’ve been taking Swedish classes for four months but we still talk to each other in English. Occasionally I’ll practice my Swedish with him, ask him grammatical questions, or he will speak Swedish to me and I’ll speak English back. But we are use to speaking in English. Switching into a different language feels strange to both of us, since we’ve been speaking English for five years. When I’m fluent enough I’m sure he would love to speak in Swedish, but in the mean time we’ll stick with English.

How has dating someone from a different culture changed you as a person?

I believe that being in an international relationship has taught me to be and think more global, in an un-biased and balanced way.  For example, the majority of the news in the US is related to the US in some way. Sweden doesn’t report on events that are only Sweden related, they report on most world events. There is an entire world out there and I like being in a country that is not self-centered and gives multiple point of views to form my own opinion. It’s helped to change my views about other countries and gain more respect for cultures and customs.

What is the most difficult thing that comes with dating someone from a different country/culture?

The most difficult part thing of dating someone from a different country is being away from family and friends. If we choose to live in the States, Magnus will be away from his family and friends, and if we choose to live in Sweden, I’ll be the one away from my loved ones. 

In terms of dating, flirting, etc. what makes the men from your significant other’s country different from your home country?

The men in Sweden are more metro than the men in the States. For example, Sweden men are more sentimental and open to sharing their feelings, whereas men in the States close up those feelings and aren’t as prone to sharing them. I’ve also noticed Swedish men are interested in fashion, trends and shopping. They take their time shopping, unlike American men who take about fifteen minutes shopping and know what they want to buy.

What do you believe makes a relationship between two people from two different parts of the world work?

I believe the most important part of a relationship between two people from two different countries is understanding. Each person needs to truly understand the country the other one comes from along with their customs and cultures. I learned so much more about Magnus after moving to Sweden because I was experiencing where he came from and this gave me a better understanding of him.

What has being in a relationship with someone from another country taught you? About yourself, the culture, the language, etc.

Being with someone from a different culture has taught me that life’s too short to live inside you’re comfort zone. I’ve learned to step out of my comfort zone, be more open-minded and try new things. I’ve tried new foods with Magnus that I usually wouldn’t with someone in the States, like blood pudding or deer. By not trying a new dish of food or a new experience, it makes me think I’m missing out on something great and like I said before, life’s too short for that.  

One thing the Swedish culture has taught me is to become more resourceful. People here live in smaller apartments, eat smaller portions, recycle every day, and use the bus and subway transportation system. It was a big change coming from a country where food portions are double, apartment sizes are more than enough and transportation systems barely exist. Dating Magnus has really opened my eyes to a different lifestyle.

And what is the absolute best part of being in love with a man from a foreign land?

The best part about being with someone from a foreign country is living with them in their home country! It’s so fun to see where Magnus came from and learn his language, customs and culture. It’s also a once in a life time opportunity to live in Europe and I’m enjoying every second of it with him.

To follow more of Alexis’s story go to http://www.alexisinsverige.com follow her on Twitter @AlexisinSverige or become a fan of her Facebook page.

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I'm Christine, a native Seattleite and current expatriate in southern Spain. I blog about living abroad, food, travel, and always encourage taking the unconventional path.

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My Spain Bucket List
Travel to Every Region in Spain
Semana Santa in Sevilla
Carnival in Las Canarias
NYE in Madrid
La Tomatina Festival
Hike the Camino de Santiago
Go to a Sidrería in Basque Country
Island-hop the Balearics in Summer
Las Fallas in Valencia
Pamplona Running of the Bulls




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