Maria and I met in Argentina, while I was living in Puerto Iguazu for a few months during my travels through South America. Puerto Iguazu is the small, but lively and incredibly attractive, town alongside the famous Iguazu falls.
Iguazu Falls is an amazing cluster of waterfalls dispersed throughout a vast tropical jungle right on the border of Brasil and Argentina. The entire area is breathtakingly beautiful.
There are two sister towns, Foz do iguacu in Brasil and puerto Iguazu in Argentina.
Maria is 23 year old. She lives with her aunts in posadas and sometimes wanda and sometimes iguazu.
Maria and I met in Iguazu in March of 2004.
I got stuck in Puerto Iguazu, during a long bus ride from buenos aires to sao paulo. One night in iguazu became 2 nights which eventually became 6 months.
After my second month in Iguazu I started to get bored and thought about leaving. Then I met Maria and eventually completely forgot about leaving.
The very last thing I was thinking about was meeting anyone to start a long distance relationship with. For Maria that kind of thought was even further from her mind. She had just gotten out of a disappointing relationship. Somehow tho, ever since the first night that we met we havent let almost a single day pass without contacting each other.
Maria and I met through a mutual friend who worked at the hostel. They hadnt seen each other in months, but one night they bumped into each other downtown and he invited her to come visit him at the hostel that night. I was at the hostel that night, watching tv with no plans to go out. They started playing pool and need a 4th person to play.
I noticed Maria had no clue how to shoot and none of her friends seemed to be helping her out. In an unusual display of confidence? I grabbed her hand and formed it correctly to shoot. I eventually asked if she minded me helping and she said it was welcome no problem.
After the game, her friends werent around and she was just left standing there, so i made some conversation with her and she offered me some terere, the popular tea like drink in argentina.
Claudio was distracted talking to some tourists of the hostel. We talked and it was really nice and then she had to go, I didnt expect or even think of ever running into her again.
The next day, while I was eating dinner with another tourist Maria entered the hostel by surprise and approached me to ask if Claudio was around and I told her he wasnt but i could pass the message.
I told Maria that she could come back at night he would surely be there around 8, and if shed like I could show her how to play pool some more.
So, that night I was downtown running errands and forgot completely about the fact that I told Maria that I would show her how to play pool at 8.
I ran back to the hostel, late. She was sitting by herself near the bar, Claudio wasnt there either.
Unfortunately I still couldnt stay I still had to do more errands. I asked if she would like to come along. All of these happenings were verycasual for myself and her as well I believe. Up until the third night of hanging out did it even occur to either of us to become a romantic couple.
Maria and I walked and talked all around beautiful Iguazu and at the end of the night we ended up infront of her door, and then there we decided to meet for a friendly dinner the next night.
That night is when things naturally and kind of unexpectedly started turning in the direction of romance. We met almost every night and walked around Iguazu together and became best friends AND a couple. Even though we knew that I would be leaving eventually someday. We just clicked so much and got so used to each other company. A couple of months later I had to leave, to return to the United States. It was a difficult separation, but we planned to meet again as soon as possible. Hopefully within a few months.
We stayed in constant contact, it was very expensive because I hadnt yet learned about Skype or SunRocket, which now are a lifesaver, and allow us to talk almost every day.
An entire year passed. Maria waited and waited and waited for me faithfully to return. I returned at the end of April in 2005.
We moved in together immediately into a hotel in Iguazu while we waited for an extended stay hotel room in another hotel in Foz Do Iguacu in Brasil to open up for us. We moved to Foz at the beginning of May, it was one of the most special times of my life. After Foz, Maria and I went to live with her Aunt and cousins and neices in Posadas for 3 weeks. Then eventually we moved back to an apartment in Iguazu for another 30 days and then sadly I had to return home to the US again. This time the separation was even more difficult, very difficult, especially for Maria. We seperated on June 28th of 2005.
It has been 1 year apart now of constant contact,on the phone and text messages and MSN each day. Constant planning, constant waiting. We are completely commited to fullfill the promise we made in June 05, to get the visa and get married and to try living in the US.