Love In The Time of Backpackers

Asia, Thailand

Christina is a stunning, witty 27-year-old car sales professional from Deutschland. His name is Henry from Cartagena, Colombia. He is 32.

On a rather cold summer morning in the beach of Haad Rin in Koh Pangan, Thailand, they caught each other’s eyes, smiled and started a light, friendly conversion. For days, they shared new adventures in the island, scuba diving, spelunking, and dancing to the beat of native drums during the island’s world-famous Full Moon Party.

They don’t know when, they don’t know how but before they knew it, they were falling head over heels in love with each other and were totally inseparable.

I happened to meet them near the Thailand-Cambodia border, filling up visa applications. Being a citizen of the Philippines, a member nation of the ASEAN region, I no longer needed a visa to enter Cambodia and was spending my time during the short break to meet new friends.

Along with two new friends from Austria and a friend from South Korea, I listened to how they met and fell in love. If not for the story, I would have suspected that they were lovers for so long, not three weeks.

There was a certain chemistry between them that people around them could not deny. I watched them closely and noticed they they were so in tune of each other’s movements and emotions: an example perhaps is that one of them automatically moves when the other moves .

Christina brushes her hair to her ears and Henry would automatically shift his position to place his hand on her shoulders. It was like magnet. A force of push and pull.

Five days of touring Cambodia with the couple has made me a believer in the power of love.

It comes in the most unusual places and in the most unexpected times. Their story, although very romantic, is not the first among travelers. Two years earlier, I already met a Swedish girl who found her soul mate in the streets of Marrakech, Morocco.

I guess love is an escapable force. Or a destination. No matter where you’re from, and which route you take, you will still arrive at the exact place where you are meant to go.

I have crossed different oceans, different timezones, and I found it to be true that the mysteries of this deep emotion is the same no matter where you are.

I guess the incidence of falling in love during your travels, is not an uncommon thing, after all, most travelers are soul searchers, trying to find the true meaning of their lives in this vast universe.

Travelers try to find true beauty in this world and sometimes, the journey towards that discovery, allows you to meet people you are destined to meet.

I hope someday that I will meet mine too.


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