JenSop: The Singing Traveler!

Idealist. Dreamer. Singer. Explorer.

A Love Story

If you’re a regular reader of this blog, you’re undoubtedly familiar with my wonderful handsome husband, Miloš.  You’ve seen us take many adventures together, you’ve seen us having silly fun, and you’ve also seen how much we love each other.

But perhaps you don’t know how it all started.

Here’s the short version….

In the summer of 2011, I went on a cruise of the Danube River with my parents and my sister.

You guessed it, Miloš was working on that ship.   It all started with him photobombing the very first pic that I took of the ship when we arrived – he was carrying my luggage and stepped into the frame of the photo.

IMG_2588

The famous photobomb!

During that cruise, some of us went out in Vienna to a couple of bars, where Miloš and I did a lot of talking and started to get to know each other.  Near the end of the trip, Miloš invited me to walk around Budapest with him during his three hour afternoon break between shifts.  I said yes, and we had a fantastic time.  We went out again later that night to some bars in Budapest.  We had so much fun!  We really clicked.  But I was heading back to the States, and well, he was a Croatian working on a cruise ship in Europe.  What were the chances we’d ever see each other again?  We nonetheless exchanged info so we could become Facebook friends.

I went home and continued my life.  Miloš and I started messaging back and forth on Facebook, but sporadically at first.  While home, I led the normal life of an active single gal on the dating scene.  But it was always Miloš’ messages that got me more excited than anything or anyone else.  We messaged more and more frequently.  We started finding out about more things we had in common.  (For starters, we found out we both had a huge love of great classic rock music AND Star Trek TNG…  And LOTR… And then Battlestar Galactica…  The list goes on….)

By the early fall of 2011, I already knew I was going to be heading to Europe that next February (2012) to try my hand at some European auditions.  I settled on staying in Vienna because I had been there before and had some musical contacts in the city and at the opera house.  Once the plans were laid, I asked Miloš if he would like to come visit me while I was there.  He totally agreed, and over the next few months of our increasingly regular Facebook chatting, we made our plans and chose our dates.

Fast forward to February 21, 2012.  I was sitting in my apartment in Vienna, waiting for Miloš to call me to tell me he was outside the building so I could buzz him in.  I was online chatting with my friend Kristen on gmail chat, when there was a knock at the door.  I already had my cute dress on, but didn’t even bother putting on my awesome boots, because I figured it was just my landlady at the door again.  (Since it was still a little early, and Miloš hadn’t called yet anyway.)  I ran over and opened the door.

There was Miloš!

Damn, we were both really nervous at that moment.  ( 🙂 We still chuckle about it now, actually.)  Even though we had chatted online regularly up until then, it had been months since we had seen each other in person.

But here’s one of the MANY clues of just how meant-to-be this all was and is… after the first hour or so of initial nerves, we briskly fell into such a feeling of ease and comfort with one another.  It was as if I had known this man my whole life – or longer.  During that week-long visit we walked a lot around Vienna, we visited museums, we went out to bars and clubs, we even took a little side trip to Salzburg.  Before Miloš left to go back home, we already were planning my first trip to Croatia and Miloš’ visit to the States at the end of his cruise season later that year.

I was in Croatia just a week and a half later for a short visit before Miloš had to leave for the ship.  I also visited him in Switzerland before going back to the USA in April.  At the same time,  we also started our plans for spending part of summer vacation together that coming August in Croatia.

This was all happening in a very short time frame.

Literally, inside of just a few weeks of my life, everything changed.  Like, KAPOW!  BAM!  BOOM! (*cue more explosion noises*)

I think I’ve mentioned previously in other posts that it was also extremely terrifying!  The speed at which I was developing real genuine feelings for Miloš was honestly freaking me out.  But due in part to having my wonderful guardian angel (my late Pop-Pop) watching over me and giving me a huge smack-in-the-face sign (and even more signs and help after that), I forged straight forward into the scary unknown, and I’m forever grateful that I did.

When I returned to the USA that April, Miloš and I spent our first long stretch apart – four months.  Ugh.  It was tough.  But we stayed in constant contact and were forming a closer bond despite our physical separation.  Then in August 2012, I got to Croatia and we had an amazing vacation together in Zadar.  There’s just something about when the two of us are together – when we’re in each other’s actual physical presence – it’s really powerful, it’s something bigger than ourselves.  There’s this amazingly strong energy between us.

We spent the next couple of years building a relationship split between intensely awesome times together and painful long stretches apart.  Yet despite the times apart, things just kept getting better and better, and we grew ever stronger as a couple.  (Thank God for modern technology!)   Obviously, I eventually realized that I needed to be able to legally stay in Europe.  (Before I got my dual citizenship, I was only allowed to stay for three months at a time because of the Visa laws.)  So that intense desire to stay was the driving force that motivated me into finding out that I could get my Hungarian citizenship.  It took a long time, but it was successful!  (Halleluja!)

Miloš and I honestly and genuinely love each other more every day.  I know it sounds so cliched, but it’s just true.  If there is such a thing as soul mates, we are it.  His love healed every scar on my previously jaded heart.  He saved my life and gave it new meaning.  He is my own personal Prince Charming.  I feel loved, valued, important, beautiful, and supported.  Neither of us is perfect, but we love each other completely anyway – and that in itself is its own kind of perfection.

Sometimes we’re still both in awe that we found each other.

In this big huge world, the chances were 7 billion to one.

Think about that for a second.

7 BILLION people on this planet.

We weren’t neighbors.  We didn’t go to school together.  We didn’t have mutual friends.  We didn’t work together.  Not from the same town.

We were from two different countries on different continents – located across the globe from each other.

It was simply meant to be.

Yes, we’ve been on many wonderful adventures, but the best one of all is this amazing life we’re building together.

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Want more details?

Here’s our crazy timeline (with a few links to some of those trips if you want to relive any more of our awesome experiences – or get tips for your own similar trips!)

Feb. 2012 – our amazing, life-changing week together in Vienna

March 2012 – my first trip to Croatia to visit Miloš’ hometown.

April 2012 – visiting Miloš on his ship in Basel, Switzerland

April 2012 – return to USA (four months apart)

Aug. 2012 – vacation together in Zadar, Croatia and Saharun!  (followed by three months apart)

Nov/Dec. 2012 – together in the USA!  Philly, NYC, Boston, Chicago! Down time at home in Quakertown, PA.  Rolling Stones concert!

Jan/Feb/March 2013 – splitting my time between Vienna and with Miloš in Croatia during the winter off-season

March 2013 – visit Miloš in Cologne, Germany

April 2013 – visit Miloš in Paris, France  (Day trip to Disneyland Paris!)

April 2013 – return to USA (three months apart)

July/Aug 2013 – vacation together in Croatia: Makarska, Split, Brela, and Miloš’s hometown of Crikvenica  (Deep thoughts and Musings)

(followed by three months apart)

Nov/Dec 2013 – together in the USA!  Miloš’ first trip to Disney!  Lots of time at home in PA.  Day trips into NYC.  (Busy caroling season!)

Jan/Feb/March 2014 – spent the rest of the off-season together in Croatia.  (Trip to Venice for Valentine’s Day! Day trips to Krk and Plitvice.)

March 2014 – I settle into my apartment in Vienna while Miloš heads off to start the cruise season

April 2014 – I’m a dual citizen!!!!

(NO MORE super long stretches apart!  Yay!!!)

May 2014 – went on my own to Romania to see my grandparents’ village

(During the 2014 cruise season, Miloš’ ship stopped over in Vienna every 1-3 weeks.  He was usually here only 1-2 days each time through.)

July 2014 – Vacation in Croatia!  Crikvenica and Makarska

Aug/Sept. 2014 – A week back in Miloš’ hometown of Crikvenica

Sept – Oct. – Finish out my time in Vienna for 2014 while Miloš finishes the cruise season.

Nov. – Spend some time in Croatia and visit friends in Serbia!

Nov/Dec – Back to the USA together!

Jan – March 2015 – together in Croatia! (Winter Wonderland trip to Plitvice)

FEBRUARY 13th, 2015 – OFFICIALLY ENGAGED!!!  (Croatian boyfriend is now Croatian fiancé!)

Showing off my ring at the spot where Miloš proposed. 🙂

 

March – October, 2015 – working together on the River Cruise Ship!  Seeing the world!

2015: Lots of adventures!  Here are just a few of them that you can read about…

Rovinj, Croatia

Porec, Croatia

Motovun, Croatia

Krka National Park, Croatia

Skradin, Croatia

Rothenburg, Germany

Passau, Germany

Krems, Austria

Dürnstein, Austria

Miltenberg, Germany

Bamberg, Germany

Ghent, Belgium

Nov/Dec/Jan – Back in the USA for Christmas Caroling season (and another Disney trip, of course!)

Jan -April, 2016 – Together in Croatia again!

 

MAY 28, 2016 – OUR AWESOME WEDDING!!!! (CLICK HERE!!!)

2016 Travel season: working as tour directors in different parts of Europe.  (Sadly it means some stretches apart, but we’re saving and planning for the future!)

Even if it’s just for short spurts, we still miss each other every single day that we’re not together.

 

4 thoughts on “A Love Story

  1. Pingback: What I’ve learned about love… | JenSop: The Singing Travel Agent!

  2. Pingback: Jen and Miloš | Jen and Milos

  3. Pingback: Engaged! | JenSop: The Singing Travel Agent!

  4. Pingback: Marrying a Foreigner – be ready to jump through the hoops! | JenSop: The Singing Travel Agent!

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