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Chasing Love thru Asia: Our story begins in Singapore

Last time I wrote I talked about how life took off in a new direction for me and I found love in Chiang Mai. It’s been one hell of a ride. That’s for sure. (If you missed out you can get caught up here).  Anyways…

Finding love in Chiang Mai, Thailand. Paolo and I at the Loi Krathong Lantern festival.

It’s been 59 days since I last saw Paolo and said goodbye to him at the Bangkok airport in Thailand. He was flying to Dubai where he would join the cruise ship to return to work and I would head to Laos for a visa run. At that time it was a very strange moment for the both of us. I mean, we had only spent 30-days together and now we are talking of quitting jobs, starting a life together, and finding new ways to create income. It’s a new path and he has to be sure before making that leap of faith on something built in just a short amount of time. Can one ever really know for sure? I can understand being nervous and the millions of thoughts that can run through your head in moments like this…

So in that moment in Bangkok where we were saying goodbye to each other, I didn’t know how to feel and I don’t think he did either. It was unsettling as I watched him go through security where I could not be and disappear into the airport.

Is this for real?

Was it just a moment in time where two people had an amazing time together and that’s that?

Is this goodbye forever or is this just goodbye I’ll see you soon.

I had no idea how to feel. I didn’t know if I should be strong and walk away from the whole thing, cry, or be happy about the future.

I had a few hours in the hotel room we stayed in together before starting my train journey to Laos. It was empty. I felt empty. I was really confused and I didn’t know whether to let go or hold on and enjoy the ride. I was a train wreck.

I don’t know why this was so hard for me because I really only had one option, jump. Because that’s just how I roll.

One of our many calls on Skype...

It only took a few days of us being apart for both of us to know that we truly wanted to do this and we have spent the last 59 days furthering our relationship as best we can on Skype. He spends a lot of money to Skype me via satellite from the cruise ship everyday. He jokes that he’s set the record for highest internet bill on board. If there was a trophy, I’m positive he would’ve won it.

Paolo has a 6-month contract with the cruise ship he is working on, but neither of us wanted to stay apart for that long so I purchased plane tickets to follow the cruise ship around asia that spanned Singapore, Bangkok (Thailand), Ho Chi Minh (Vietnam), Halong Bay (Vietnam), and Hong Kong. We have been in discussions of him quitting early, but nothing is for sure at this point and it changes like the wind. Right now, I have just arrived to Singapore, the first stop in our Asian rendezvous adventure and it feels like I’ve waited forever for this moment. I am loving this story we are creating together.

When Asiarooms.com heard about our romantic rendezvous through Asia they decided to sponsor our Singapore stay with 2 nights at Hotel Clover. The hotel was in a hip area  in the heart of Singapore with an interesting nightlife just down the street. It was a very simple 4-star hotel, but had a unique antique decor that made it feel special! Asia has this weird thing about glass bathrooms in nice hotels so that was a privacy adjustment.

This passed by our hotel room and gave me a good laugh, considering...

I’ve used a lot of booking sites as I’ve traveled around Asia and the world and I get frustrated with how the information that is important to me is so difficult to find, time consuming to look through, or presented in a manner that isn’t intuitive. This is not the case with Asiarooms.

I found that I could search for rooms in the way I wanted to search for them and get the information I wanted quickly and easily which decreased the amount of time it takes to find and book a room. Time is money or adventure! Not only that, but you don’t prepay, you pay at the hotel. This is awesome because if the price of the room is actually lower at the hotel, you pay the lower price at check-out and if its higher, you pay the Asiarooms price. This is awesome for my budget!

My only compliant is occasionally in the search the prices are lower than what is shown as booking options on the hotel page and I’m not sure why. Since I found out about Asiarooms it has become my go-to booking site for hotels in Asia and I’ve already used it to book our hotel in Bangkok, the next port. If you book a few weeks in advance in cities like Hong Kong you can get some really good ‘early bird’ deals for some swank hotels. Score.

Niiiiiiiiice. Thanks Asiarooms.com

Paolo and I had arranged to meet at Hotel Clover at 10 am in the morning but at midnight he called me on Skype… He has to call me since my phone always has internet and his doesn’t. I thought it was sweet that we would see each other in a few hours, yet he still wanted to Skype and talk to me.  I don’t think either of us slept that night…

It was a mixture of nervousness and excitement. I had a million questions running through my head. Would it be the same? Would it be different? What would we learn about each other? What would I say? I imagined in my mind what it would feel like to see him for the first time and what that moment would look like. In my mind it was going to be exactly like one of those hollywood movie moments…

But that’s totally not what happened. I was running 5-minutes late when my phone rang on Skype with a call from Paolo.

“Where are you?”

“I’m in a taxi, we’re turning on the street right now. I’ll be there in a minute.”

“You took a taxi?”

“I was running late…” 

“I see you.”

We continued to talk on Skype while I made my way to the hotel since the taxi had passed it. When I entered, I took a look around and didn’t see him. The receptionist took one look at me and pointed behind a wall. “He’s over there.” As if she knew.

The moment was now.

I turned around the corner to see him sitting on a couch, dressed perfectly. He was nervous so he didn’t stand up crushing my running embrace hollywood movie dream. So I sat down next to him and we had a different kind of moment. It was beautiful and perfect with a hint of awkward.

To feel that feeling I missed so much during our time apart was indescribable. I can’t explain the sense of calm that overtakes me in his presence. To smell that familiar smell, to feel the emotion created just by simply touching him… It’s like a warm tequila shot for the emotional heart that overtakes your whole body. He’s like a drug that I can’t get enough of.  My heart felt at ease as the moment validated our questioning minds.

Being away from someone that you love can make you appreciate the little things more. When we got into the room we just embraced each other for about an hour and enjoyed the moment we had been waiting so long for. It took a little while for our nerves to calm down and then everything just fell into place. It was like we were never apart. We work so well together and I was happy to finally be one.

Singapore Skyline as seen from the Singapore Flyer

Singapore is really expensive city and there isn’t much to do here besides the Singapore flyer (ferris wheel) and universal studios. It was raining on and off for the 3-days we had together so we decided just spend time together doing whatever, sleep in, and eat like royalty while taking care of a few things we needed to do for our future together around the city.  We saw Chinatown for all of 5-minutes, ate an unforgettable dinner of crab and prawns in the seafood market, had the most amazing sushi, and got a couples massage. The rest of the time we were in the hotel…

Even though posting this photo makes me uncomfortable... I think the photo says more than my words ever could.

I love taking photos and creating memories to look back on. At anytime I can go back and see all the amazing things I’ve seen or experienced and share it. Sometimes, I need that kind of reminder to show me just how much I’ve accomplished with the cards life has dealt me. It’s one of my favorite things about traveling. However, taking photos with Paolo, is like pulling teeth.  I don’t have many photos of the things we did together because I forgot or maybe I just didn’t want to go through the drama of it.  He threatens a lawyer if I post a photo on the blog without his approval. At first, the only photo he approved was the one above of our reflection in the glass shower. After lots of coaxing and giggles I now present to you, the many faces of Paolo….

I'm having a great time... I totally want to be here.

What the fuck do you want?

I am not retarded, I swear.

Noooo...

What you need?

For fucks sake. Can you be normal for like 2 seconds? Absolutely not.

lulz.

What have I gotten myself in to?

Finally... Jesus Christ.

Our time together was amazing and it was everything I imagined it to be and more. Paolo continues to surprise me in the things he says and the way he can be. We both have strange pasts, a language barrier to overcome, and a cultural difference so we decided that in Singapore we would talk about these things to make sure that nobody could ever get between us. There are things I learned that are hard for anyone to accept, but the past does not matter to me… Only the now and the future.

Singapore was a huge step forward for our relationship and it was difficult when it was time to say goodbye.  My mind still wanders where this is going and I have a vision of where I want it to go, but in the meantime I’m enjoying the ride. I wasn’t ready for this to come into my life at this moment, but if we wait until we’re ready, we’ll be waiting for the rest of our lives. With Paolo life is made of small beautiful moments and everyday we create something special.

… and I continue to fall as I watch him disappear into the crowd once again. However, this time it’s only 2-days before I see him in Bangkok and not an  excruciating two months.

Disclosure: Asiarooms.com paid for our accommodation in Singapore, but as always my opinons are my own based on my experience.  

Jenny is rebooting her life. She is leaving everything behind to backpack the world as a digital nomad. She doesn’t know when, where, or if she’s coming home.

  • http://www.facebook.com/jeaniewitcraft Jeanie Witcraft

    LOVE it! “Finally! Jesus Christ” :) I hear YOU, Jenny. A happy, excited, vulnerable, I’m finally back home in my own skin Jenny. I am genuinely happy for you to have this experience…may life grant you the longest string of precious memories ever.

    Can’t wait to see you again–WDS, yeah? I’ll be there for a week (I think)

    • http://www.whereisjenny.com Jenny

      Yay! I have my WDS ticket and if all goes according to plan both Paolo and I will be there. We are currently in Austin, tx. :)

  • http://twitter.com/nomadicchick Jeannie Mark

    Lady, I remember when you sat beside me in Vancouver Starbucks wondering if you’d ever get to this point. You did! You’re traveling, working again and now love.. So fantastic!! You made me smile today. Keep at it and more cool shit will happen. :)

    • http://www.whereisjenny.com Jenny

      I remember that and its a little funny now, That was a shitty time with pain… Still a battle but my mind has been in a much better place for a long time. I’ve been doing a lot of things but many I can’t talk about publically for now. Thanks for being there! :)

  • sharon leigh

    I am so happy for you, Jenny. Bravery is never easy but so worth it. Anyone can jump out of an airplane. It takes real guts to take the jump with your heart in such a manner where you honor yourself and offer yourself in equal portions. I can completely relate to your love story. The GF(she’s French) and I have been together now for 17 years. :) I seriously hope to cross paths with you(two!) at some point. I still want to have you speak at a seminar at some point also! I’ll keep you posted.

    • http://www.whereisjenny.com Jenny

      Thanks Sharon! Wow 17 years, that’s awesome. The culture and language difference are difficult at times but worth it. Please keep me posted would love to speak whenever you need it.

  • http://www.facebook.com/denise.cowley.5 Denise Cowley

    Amazing Jenny! You are so inspiring! My sister& I have been following your posts for ages, you have inspired me to make so many changes in life. I’m still learning to ‘jump’ & not worry about every little thing but its great to know there’s people out there like you who get it & think the same as we do! Love your posts! So happy you found love you deserve every minute of it! Heaps of love & best wishes from your followers in Western Australia xx

    • http://www.whereisjenny.com Jenny

      Glad it’s helped you jump and not worry so much. Life is too amazing to miss out on all the beautiful moments we can create if we just allow ourselves to. It’s my dream to visit Australia one day! : ]

  • http://twitter.com/RamblinSisters Ramblin’ Sisters

    I am loving this whole experience! Thank you so much for sharing it all. I found your blog awhile ago when I was doing research about starting my own adventure out on the road (my sister and I are taking off in July) and I’m glad I started following it. You have been such an inspiration and following the love story has been and extra bonus! I love all the pictures in this post, the “What the fuck do you want?” one made me literally lol.

    • http://www.whereisjenny.com Jenny

      We have had lots of laughs over those photos. Everytime it’s time to take a photo Paolo makes some weird face. So all of our photos are messed up. lulz. Glad you have been inspired and are enjoying the story. Keep me updated, maybe our paths will cross! : ]

      • http://twitter.com/RamblinSisters Ramblin’ Sisters

        Sure thing! We have a blog set up at http://ramblinsisters.wordpress.com/
        I’m getting a slow start at it, but have been having fun with it!

  • http://twitter.com/creative_nomad_ creative nomad

    Jenny why? why did you keep me in suspense for most of that story as to wwhether or not it would work out? pure unfair!

    I am so glad this is working out for you, keep the stories coming I love the real life romance stories! enjoy every bit of it and all the best!

    • http://www.whereisjenny.com Jenny

      Haha. I got a story for every port that will come out over the next few weeks in between some other articles I have scheduled! So you’ll get your ending, but who knows really what will happen. : )

  • http://www.myinnerg.com Justin McClelland

    This story is amazing Jenny. I’m very happy for you and wish you two nothing but the best. Reading this story makes me want to be in love.

    • http://www.whereisjenny.com Jenny

      Thanks Justin! It came out of nowhere for me. Crazy.

  • http://www.bemytravelmuse.com/ Kristin Addis

    I had a similar experience during my travels as well :) Didn’t end so well but at the same time, it was worth it and I’m happy that you get to have the same.

    BTW, Kakao talk lets you talk for free via an iphone app. Can use wifi for it as well. Was a lifesaver for us!

  • http://www.frugalexpat.com/ frugal expat

    First time I stumbled on your blog..

    Love is in the air.. :-)

    Thanks for sharing your feedback about Asiarooms. I should try this site for booking our hotel rooms in Singapore and Malaysia this June.

    Cheers

    • http://www.whereisjenny.com Jenny

      Thanks for stopping by! I hope you stick around. : ] Asiarooms has been great. It’s easier to find what you want and the prices have saved me quite a bit of money. The only downside is in some more rural areas they don’t have as much selection as other sites, but other than that, no complaints.

  • Shivangi Rajendran

    WOW !! Sounds straight out of a movie…..nd I love THE picture…it’s beautiful !! all the best to u two….

    • http://www.whereisjenny.com Jenny

      Thank you!!! : ]

  • http://www.careerbreak360.com/ Liz

    I’ve only just stumbled across your blog, but your story has cheered me up and put a smile on my face. Good luck to you guys :)

    • http://www.whereisjenny.com Jenny

      Awww thanks Liz.

  • http://twitter.com/hikebiketravel Leigh McAdam

    What a lovely, uplifting blog post. I hope you can continue to rendezvous around Asia and make things work. Love really can conquer all – and as someone who has been married for almost 33 years now I think I can say that. Good luck to both of you.

    • http://www.whereisjenny.com Jenny

      Wow. 33 years! Congrats to you two. I’m finally posting the rest of the story and we are currently in Austin, TX and on our way to Costa Rica in the next few days. Woohoo.

  • Amanda Rodrigues

    Wow! What a lovely post! I wish you both all the best. :)

    • http://www.whereisjenny.com Jenny

      Thanks Amanda! : ]

  • Kristy

    You two are lovely couple. I love the wacky shots. It is indeed funny but I can feel the love on each smiles, grin and look on each other. <3

    Regards,
    Kristy of http://www.migrationexpert.com