First I want to apologize for not posting anything on my blog in so long. I hit a wall a few months ago, and I had a hard time writing because I couldn’t write about the things I really wanted to. I still needed to keep them secret. But I’m finally ready to spill. A few months ago I told you how I met Andy and fell in love. I’m still sometimes hit with a rush of amazement that we actually met, and I feel so lucky that it happened. But I didn’t tell you the whole story.

When Andy and I first started talking, I didn’t tell many people about my crush because I thought, this is crazy, he lives in Germany! I especially didn’t want to tell my coworkers because I didn’t know what might happen with Andy, and I didn’t want work to worry about what might happen with my extreme long distance relationship. Plus we didn’t even meet each other in person until we had known each other for 4 months. What if we didn’t click in person?

But we did click. The little bit of weirdness we experienced at finally being in each other’s physical presence disappeared in the time it took to walk from the train station to the hotel in Prague. Then it just felt natural to be around him. I visited him at New Year’s a month later in Freiburg where he lives, and by the end of that weekend, we knew we wanted to spend the rest of our lives together.

Just as I was finally telling everyone about meeting and falling in love with Andy, we got engaged and I made the decision to move to Germany! But at the same time, my company went through some majorly chaotic shake-ups and I didn’t want to add to it by telling them my plans. Plus I wasn’t sure if it was a good idea to give several months notice no matter what the reason for leaving is. So I spent the past few months planning for all the various changes that are about to occur in my life, all in stressful secrecy. Of course my friends and family knew, but that huge chunk of time spent at work every day having to hide the most important events of my life was more stressful than I ever could’ve imagined.

my engagement ring from Andy

With the wedding only a few weeks away (June 5th!) I decided it was time to finally break the news. A few days ago I told my managers that I’m getting married and moving to Germany. They were understandably surprised but pretty understanding and happy for me. So now I’m working out my last few weeks until May 27, which will be my last day of work. I still haven’t completely digested the whole thing. I’ve been out of college and at a full time job for almost 9 years, so the idea of not having a job for awhile it really strange.

My flight to Germany, the one that’s a move instead of a visit, is July 8th. I will spend almost 3 months with Andy, getting settled and taking Germany classes. Then at the end of August I’m meeting up with Jaime and hopefully some other bloggers in Buñol, Spain (outside of Valencia) for La Tomatina, a huge tomato fight that takes place on the last Wednesday of every August. Then at the end of September, I’m leaving to travel for about 4 months. More details on that later.

I’m so happy to finally be able to share this with everyone! Thank you to those of you who’ve known and supported and encouraged me these past few months. I am so looking forward to this next stage of my life, no matter how scary it is. Andy is the man I’ve been looking and hoping for my whole life, and I can’t wait to explore the world with him one piece at a time.

Update: Check out the wedding photos here!

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95 comments on “The Secrets I’ve Been Keeping

  1. Allison

    Wow! How exciting and romantic! I am so happy for you! I cannot wait to keep up with everything now that it’s out in the air. Congratulations girl and I wish you all the best in your bright future.


    1. Ali Post author

      Thanks Caroline! I hope you’re doing great in Australia!

    1. Ali Post author

      Thanks Erica! I hope Mexico is treating you well!

    1. Ali Post author

      Thanks for being one of my biggest chearleaders, Christina!

  2. Laura

    Congrats! Hope you have the time of your lives together!

  3. Clyde

    PHEW!!!! At least I don’t have to hold my tounge any longer…baby girl….i am not only sooooooo jealous of ure travels in life…..but more so in what ure life has found in your travels…..


    1. Ali Post author

      Thanks! Can’t wait to see you in a few weeks! -Fred

  4. Jaime

    I’ll do it one more time… EEEEeeeeeeeee CONGRATS~

    So glad you finally are free to tell the world your plans and whats going to make you happy!!! I am so glad I was able to help you a bit & being here to talk to when you needed me. I can not wait to meet you in Spain its going to be awesome!!! Ahh I bet it feels great now to have so much weight lifted off your shoulders~

  5. SBSuz

    Wow – that is so exciting! I know you don’t know me, but I love reading your blog and wish you all the best. What an incredibly exciting time for you. Cheers!

    1. Ali Post author

      Thanks! And thanks for reading my blog!

  6. Odysseus

    Ooo, lovely ring! It must have been so hard to be that happy and make so many plans for your wedding while keeping it all a secret.

    1. Ali Post author

      It was really difficult. Thanks for reading!

  7. Christy @ Ordinary Traveler

    Wow! Congratulations! I bet it feels really good to get that all out in the open. I look forward to reading about your adventures. That tomato fight sounds like a blast!

    1. Ali Post author

      Thanks Christy! I’ll definitely write something about the tomato fight, among other things!

  8. Debra

    WOW!!!! So incredibly happy for you. When you find “the one”, you just know. It sounds like a silly fantasy until it actually happens to you. I wish you tons of happiness and travel adventures. Good luck to you! Keep blogging 🙂

  9. Brandon

    Right on – glad you finally got that off your chest. I know it’s been weighing you down a lot. So excited for you. And Germany – that’s just the icing on top! 🙂

    1. Ali Post author

      Thanks Brandon! Let me know if you make it to our neck of the woods!

  10. Amy

    HOLY CRAP! Man, I’ve missed out on news not going to the ATL Travel Tweetups!

    Congrats lady! I literally gasped when I scrolled down and saw the ring, it’s absolutely beautiful.

    And getting married in June, wowsa! So much has happened! I’m so incredibly happy for you. I could tell how you felt about Andy when you were telling us about him months ago. You two have an amazing story, and I can’t wait to hear more as time goes on!

    1. Ali Post author

      ATL travel tweetups is where it’s at! Ha! Thanks Amy! Hope to see you soon!

  11. sparkiejr

    WHE WHE WHEEEE. congratulations girl.
    I am glad that everything worked out for you and i hope you enjoy this incredible opportunity to live in another country.

    1. Ali Post author

      Thanks JR! And thanks about the ring too 🙂

  12. Wolfe

    Andy’s gonna be an incredible witness for your life & partner for the adventure!!!

    1. Ali Post author

      Thanks for being one of my best friends & travel buddy Amanda!

  13. Val

    Congratulations! It’s so great that everything is finally out in the open! I’m so happy for you and can’t wait to meet you soon!

  14. Jeremy Branham

    What?! You are getting married?! I had no idea! 🙂

    I am sure keeping that a secret from those at work was hard. And while most of this wasn’t news to me (I even knew what weekend you were getting married!) that is exciting about the upcoming travel plans. I didn’t know that!

    1. Ali Post author

      Hilarious Jeremy 🙂 Thanks! Yep, I decided this big chunk of time in between jobs is the perfect time to take the long term trip I’ve always wanted to do. See you in a few weeks!

  15. TL

    Holy freaking cow girl!!!!
    I am so proud of you and your bravery. Andy is one lucky man!
    Good luck and congratulations! I love you.

  16. Jen

    Congratulations and Germany of course is very exciting. But I’m biased. ;-D Seriously, I think you will love living here. Welcome! 🙂

    1. Ali Post author

      Thanks Jen! I like what I’ve seen so far, so I’m sure I’ll like living there. Hopefully we can all meet up one of these days once I get there.

  17. Sabrina

    Congratulations! That’s amazing! Can’t believe this came out of a chance Twitter meeting 🙂 Very, very cool! Are you getting married in the States and then moving to Germany? I hope you’ll like it there! Sounds like you already have quite a bit of travel lined up, so I’m sure you’ll be busy 🙂

    I’ve moved to the US mainly to be with my (Italian) boyfriend and I haven’t ever regretted that decision. If anything, being two foreigners in a foreign country has brought us so close together. Enough about me though. Congrats again and I hope it all works out exactly like you guys hope!!

    1. Ali Post author

      Thanks Sabrina! Yes, we’re getting married in the States, outside of Atlanta. Andy’s family is going to drive down from North Carolina. I leave for Germany about a month later. Exciting! But also kind of freaking me out because all the sudden it’s just around the corner! But I’m sure I’ll love it!

    1. Ali Post author

      I wish! Andy is a US citizen, so no luck there. Thanks for stopping by!

  18. Justin Morris

    Whoa this all happened pretty bloody quick! Congratulations guys! Hope you have an amazing wedding and I’m sure we’ll meet somewhere in Europe one day.

    1. Ali Post author

      Thanks Justin! Not too quick I don’t think. We’ll be together 10 months by the wedding. Ok kinda quick 🙂 I’m sure we will cross paths at some point.

  19. Gillian @OneGiantStep

    Congratulations to both of you! It’s a wonderful story and the two of you are going to have a wonderful life! I hope one of you posts some wedding photos…? Cheers!!

    1. Ali Post author

      Thanks Gillian! Yep, I’m sure I’ll post wedding pictures sometime after the wedding 🙂

  20. Gia

    Ali I am soooo happy for you!!! This is such a happy, romantic story! You know how I am…just smiling through tears the whole time i was reading. Congrats!!!!!

  21. Joshua


    This is very romantic, I’m so glad for you and Andy! It’s a great thing to make a change, take a break and live your love story because that is something important and pleasant. Enjoy your honeymoon and keep up the great news coming! Congratulations !!!

    Best wishes ever,


  22. Annie

    LOVE THIS POST! I am so happy for you Ali and for the changes that are coming for the two of you. Although I had a suspicion that you might be moving to Germany I had no idea you two were getting married!

    I’m so happy for you guys! I’ll be seeing you in Seattle when we all head to TBEX! Enjoy you planning and you wedding! 🙂

    1. Ali Post author

      Thanks Annie! Yep, been planning the wedding for a few months now. I didn’t realize you’re going to TBEX, can’t wait to see you there!

  23. Katie

    Congratulations!! I am a sucker for romantic, I-can’t-believe-they-met-that-way type stories and yours just about takes the cake! I love it! 🙂

    1. Ali Post author

      Thanks Katie! I still sometimes can’t believe we met this way!

  24. jade

    So romantic! Congrats!! Will this new bond start a new couples travel blog?!?! I see that in the making!

    1. Ali Post author

      Thanks Jade! Maybe just guest posting on each other’s blogs 🙂

  25. Giulia

    WOW! I didn’t check your blog regularly lately coz I saw you weren’t posting much but I just found this and… I felt so happy for you reading it, really!!! When I saw the photo of the ring I was open-mouthed (and I also thought he has great taste! hehe)
    Congratulations, I understand you must have been in a lot of pressure lately but now it must feel like heaven…
    “he is the man I’ve been looking and hoping for my whole life, and I can’t wait to explore the world with him one piece at a time.” – I hope I can say something like this one day too. 🙂
    Wow, again.

    1. Ali Post author

      Thanks! Yeah, I really ran out of motivation to write since all I wanted to write about was this and other stuff I just couldn’t make public yet. I definitely feel better now that it’s all out in the open. Maybe we’ll get to meet up with you in Italy one of these days!

  26. Anthony

    Hey Ali,
    Its a great, exciting and romantic post. Its great to see that
    your long distance relationship has really worked out with the blessings of God and I am really glad to see you guys getting married this June.
    Congratulations and wish you a great married life. The snap that you have given of your wedding ring is great. I’ll definitely say that Andy has a great choice.

    Hope to see some beautiful post about our marriage and also give some snaps
    of La Tomatina .

      1. Anthony

        You are welcome! As always!
        Really looking forward to hear what good gets going on in your life. 🙂

  27. Kirsten Alana

    LOVE the ring (great job Andy) and CONGRATULATIONS!!!!!!!!!! I am so happy for you that you can finally tell the whole world the good news. Can’t wait to see you on the train to TBEX and give you a big ol congratulatory hug in person!!!! It seems like just yesterday that Andi and I were sitting with you in Charlotte and this was still a new, secret, thing in your life. Many blessings for a happy future!!!!!

    1. Ali Post author

      Thanks Kirstin! It was so nice to have a few people to share my secret with 6 months ago. Can’t wait to see you too in a few weeks!!

  28. Laura

    I knew you were moving to Germany, but engaged??!! Congratulations!! I’m so happy for you 🙂 And June 5th happens to be the day I’m also leaving for South Africa- quite a day.

    1. Ali Post author

      Thanks Laura! How exciting, I’m looking forward to hearing about your new adventures in South Africa!

    1. Ali Post author

      Thanks Andrea! Not too much longer until the move!

  29. Dan Thompson

    Ah ha! The rest of the story! How very cool. Congrats to you both, and here’s to a long and happy marriage!


  30. Pingback: Travel Writing Round Up [June 2011] « Caroline in the City

  31. Mack Reynolds

    i know this is an old post because i’ve read that you’re already married now. very glad for you, love can sometimes come out of nowhere.

  32. Pingback: Travel Writing Round Up [June 2011] - Caroline in the City

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