My One Year Anniversary: Part I

Floating down the Mekong River

One year ago, today, I married Marissa. I thought I’d take you through the journey of our relationship, focusing this lovely eight-year voyage through the lens of travel.


Our first real test was nine months into our relationship, back in 2006. I had just completed my first year of teaching and missed my first true love: traveling the globe with a surfboard. So I told Marissa, my new true love, I wanted to head down to Central America for one month to surf. I asked her if she would meet me. And while my wife is now an accomplished flyer, earning some serious status on some snazzy airlines, she used to be terrified of flying. Even more frightening was the prospect of flying alone.


But Marissa agreed to meet me in Costa Rica. I surfed through Panama, bussed through Costa Rica (skipping the waves there because I had surfed them a few years earlier) and enjoyed some of the best waves in Nicaragua (a place that inspired a few chapters in the novel that I’m working on).


After almost missing border-crossing-hours from Nicaragua back into Costa Rica, I arrived at the airport in Liberia. (“You’re flying to Liberia? What?” Marissa’s mom had shrieked a few months earlier after Marissa had purchased her plane ticket, as her mom understandably mistook the Central American city for the country in Africa.)


“Is that him?” a man said to Marissa as he walked with her from the plane. Another man tagged along, waving goodbye to Marissa when she was in my arms.


“Who were those guys?” I wondered.


“They were trying to calm me down on the flight.”


But since then, Marissa has become a veteran flyer. And her improved temerity has allowed us to travel across Europe, bus around South America, road-trip the States, and take a three-month honeymoon in Southeast Asia, (where we took a total of ten flights).


Shooting a Gun at the Cu Chi Tunnels


I thought as a salute to my wife on our anniversary and as a preview to my next post–One Year Anniversary: Part II, which is on an entirely different topic–I’d leave you with a list of my favorite moments from our honeymoon in Southeast Asia.


Romantic Bali Bath



  • Taking a bus across from Vietnam to Cambodia and realizing that the air-conditioned van waiting for us was actually a pair of broken down motorbikes.


  • Eating bugs together in Chiang Mai as some sort of strange symbolic sacrifice to keep our love burning eternally. (Not really, but I’m sure I said something like this to get Marissa to chow down.)




Night Boat to Koh Tao


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  1. You’re such a lucky couple…
    3 months on an adventurous honeymoon.
    Thanks for letting me read about some of
    the happenings…just loved all the stories!!

    ” Happy Anniversary”

  2. Happy 1st Anniversary!! Can’t wait to read your first novel….I’m sure it will be exciting!