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Day 19: Flashback 2.5 Years to a Chance Encounter

Day 19: Giving Pat a Kiss

Day 19: Giving Pat a Kiss

Can you find love in a hostel? Two and a half years ago I ended up in Riga, Latvia as I was killing time before heading to Ukraine to teach English. I chatted briefly in passing with a couple of Australian guys in the hostel bedroom, but I think they were too preoccupied with the flirty Finnish girls to really pay attention. Hey, no worries, I was just making small talk and didn’t even remember who it was.

I was traveling with an Irish guy and an Aussie guy that I hung out with in Tallinn, so I met them down in the common room to chat about dinner plans. To save our depleting funds, we went to one of my favorite places in Riga, Pelmeni XL. In spreading the hostel love vibe, I invited everyone that was in the common room before we left to join, and it just so turns out that Patrick was in the mix.

The night turned into a massively fun one. We picked up some drinks on the way back to the hostel and grabbed a crowd to partake in some chilled drinking games (I kicked ass). Patrick was playing music off of his iPod (Mariah Carey and the Beatles) and we started talking more and more.

Everyone went out to a pub that night, but it unfortunately ended up being short-lived when another guy from the hostel got really wasted and passed out outside on the sidewalk and proceeded to vomit all over himself. Luckily he was with a cool group and we all helped to carry him back (some more than others). I thought I was about to vomit from the smell, so Pat and I took it upon ourselves to slack off and chat even more.

Even when we all went to McDonald’s for a 2am feed, Pat and I were still together just talking and talking. It was good to feel a connection with someone, but it got really late, so we decided to head to bed. (Sorry, guys, no excitement here.)

We walked up the stairs and down the hall to the 10-bed dorm room — yes, it happened to be the same room. I think we both were a little shocked to discover that we were not only going to be sleeping in the same part of the hostel, but also in the beds that were right next to each other. That was the beginning of what has now been a 2.5 year relationship and the reason for my migration to Australia.

Oh, and he was definitely one of the guys that was talking to the Finnish girls when we originally met.


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27 Responses to Day 19: Flashback 2.5 Years to a Chance Encounter

  1. Chris - The Aussie Nomad January 20, 2011 at 6:49 am #

    That photo sure looks like the Naughty Squirrel in Riga.

    • Brooke January 20, 2011 at 6:28 pm #

      Yep, it is! But back when it was called The Argonaut 🙂

  2. Tijmen January 20, 2011 at 7:11 am #

    It has always been one of my favorite things with travelling, not knowing who you will meet next. More then once I met the most amazing people in hostels, didn’t get a relationship out of it like you did. But they are still great friends to have 🙂

    • Brooke January 20, 2011 at 6:29 pm #

      True! I’ve met so many awesome people in hostels, many I keep in touch with today 🙂

  3. Lauren January 20, 2011 at 8:06 am #

    I love this. And his card-playing face doesn’t look much different from when he played NYE.

    • Brooke January 20, 2011 at 6:30 pm #

      Hahaha. Predictable Pat.

  4. Jill - Jack and Jill Travel The World January 20, 2011 at 8:06 am #

    Oh, what a cute story. Cleaning up after somebody else together can truly be a bonding experience. It’s true… 🙂

    • Brooke January 20, 2011 at 6:30 pm #

      Haha… it was a memorable night on so many levels.

  5. Candice January 20, 2011 at 2:44 pm #

    Freaking cute! I LOVE the expression on his face! Bahaha. True love at first sight.

    • Brooke January 20, 2011 at 6:33 pm #

      Thanks, Candice 😀 !!

  6. Amy January 20, 2011 at 11:54 pm #

    Adorable story, Brooke! I always enjoy hearing about friendships/relationships made on the road – and you have a good one! 🙂

    • Brooke January 21, 2011 at 5:32 pm #

      Thanks, Amy! I’m quite happy with the way things have worked out 🙂

  7. joshywashington January 21, 2011 at 7:54 am #

    Aawww, warm and fuzzies! Here’s to hostel loving and making it happen!

    • Brooke January 21, 2011 at 5:34 pm #

      Hehe, cheers 🙂 It’s been a long road, but worth it!

  8. Daniel N. January 21, 2011 at 5:30 pm #

    Lovely story 🙂
    I can relate to it, kind of.. I didn’t meet that special someone in a hostel, but in a Thai bar on Khao San Rd while I was having buckets.. I just threw her a cheesy pick up line (she was sitting alone) and we ended up together. We just celebrated our 1 year last week!

    Hurray to Travel Loving!

    • Brooke January 21, 2011 at 5:36 pm #

      Congrats! I guess when it’s meant to be, it doesn’t matter if you use a cheesy pick-up line or not 😉 Awesome that you met your gal while having buckets, and I met my man while playing drinking games and picking up a passed-out drunk guy. Funny how things work, eh?

  9. Odysseus January 21, 2011 at 5:44 pm #

    Awww, I love it! Such a sweet story.

    • Brooke January 24, 2011 at 7:07 pm #

      Hehe, sweet minus the whole drinking and picking up passed out people outside the bar part 😉 Thanks for reading 🙂

  10. Bethany January 24, 2011 at 9:02 am #

    oh this is so cute. I always loved this story of you both meeting. Love in Riga 🙂

    • Brooke January 24, 2011 at 7:08 pm #

      Weird how the world works, eh? 😀

  11. Dina February 7, 2011 at 1:46 am #

    Haha, this is a really sweet meet up story! Is there any chance Pat will grow his hair long(er) again like in the picture?

    • Brooke February 7, 2011 at 4:07 pm #

      Haha, probably not… unless we go traveling again 🙂 He cringes when he sees how long his hair was.

  12. Marina K. Villatoro February 16, 2012 at 1:26 am #

    I always thought I would find my love in a hostel. I really did, but ended up meeting mine camping in the jungle. something I literally did only 2 times on my entire gap year of traveling.

    Goes to show you really have no idea how your life will change and when 🙂

    • Brooke February 17, 2012 at 9:24 am #

      In the jungle?! Hehe, how exciting 🙂

  13. Netanya December 21, 2012 at 9:42 am #

    I know this post is old, but if you happen to get this, I am compiling love stories on Hostelling International USA’s website,

    I would love to include your story, so please send me a note!


  1. The “Oh-My-God-I’m-Excited” Trip of 2012 | Brooke vs. the World - January 25, 2012

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