"It has been a year!" said Scarlett and Jake, as they were walking towards me. I met this couple at an event early last year.
We weren't very close back then, but I learned every bit of their life from WeChat Moments: they took part in a marathon race in Dujiangyan, they spent their vacation on a beach, Scarlett flew to the United States and spent holidays with Jake's family, and Jake's parents had hot pot in Chengdu... Recently, Scarlett posted a new photo, on which Jake was down on one knee and Scarlett covered her mouth in surprise - Jake proposed to her. Eventually, this couple made a sacred vow and became husband and wife.
International relationships, just like the relationship with a younger man and long-distance relationships, has a special definition and seems tougher than others. Is that so? Scarlett and Jake cuddled up cozily in a couch and told me about their love story.
The first day they met: they were dining in the same restaurant and he couldn't take his eyes off her - the girl sitting at the next table. "He kept staring at me for 10 minutes. No, 20 minutes!" She got angry and asked him, "Why were you staring at me?" They didn't fight with each other though; her friends went to ask him to join them. On that day, he, a foreigner, asked them a plenty of questions about Chengdu. They had quite a long chat. On the next day, she sent him a cheesecake (she later found out that he didn't even like cheesecake). On the third day, they drove to Mount Qingcheng and went hiking... After two or three months, the ambiguous dating finally turned into a romantic relationship.
Scarlett always smiles when she talks. But this petite girl is independent and strong inside. She is straight-forward and doesn't like to be controlled. In her eyes, Jake is a sincere and simple man. "He is simple, like my way," said Scarlett. They share similarities in life, as well as differences. "I drive fast, he drives slow; I drink coke when taking a bath while he eats apples; he would pack things up three days before a trip. So if I can't find something, I will just ask him." In their relationship, Jake is a planner and Scarlett is somewhat like a boy. "Every time he comes back from a business trip, it's me who picks him up at the airport," said Scarlett. So that was where Jake proposed. They complement each other like a team. They end up in a perfectly happy relationship.
In the past one year and a half, they traveled together, visited the parents of both sides, got married and have been living happily ever after. Wait. Is that it? Didn't this cross-cultural relationship give them any trouble like cultural shock? When I came up with this question, Jake seemed to have never thought about it. "What do you mean?" he asked. It was Scarlett who answered: "Actually, it doesn't matter that you come from different countries and cultures; what really matters is your mind." That's right. People are born different, whether they are from the same country or not. Jake told me the secret to a healthy relationship: to learn each other's differences, to communicate with each other, and to listen to one another. They both did it, and they did it well.
First impression about him/her.
Scarlett: A laowai.
Your last fight.
Scarlett: I got a fraud call. Jake told me to just hang up, I said I knew how to deal with it.
The moment he/she touched your heart.
Jake: My parents got sick in Chengdu. She called the doctor and was really concerned. She cares about my family.
Scarlett: He fixed the toilet seat in my grandmother's house - something I planned to do (she cried at the moment).
Three things that matter the most in a relationship.
Jake: Listening, communication and passion.
Scarlett: Listening, communication and patience.
What role does Chengdu play in your relationship?
Jake: I always think about the panda statue in IFS - that is where we met.
Scarlett: We share many memories here.