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Let’s Be Adventurers | Modern Love Stories, Kathryn & Pat

Wednesday, December 8th, 2021

We are so honoured to make beautiful heirlooms that become part of your story, destined to become treasured pieces that are passed down through the generations.

Be inspired by stories of love and magic as we share some of our favourite ways Chupi pieces have helped you celebrate your most special moments. This week, we chat with Kathryn, a California girl with a romantic Irish love story.

On first meetings

Originally from California, Pat and I met through mutual friends on a camping trip in 2016. I had just graduated with a degree in Biopsychology from UC Santa Barbara (UCSB) and was living with other UCSB graduates while working in the emergency department and applying to medical school.

Pat graduated a few years earlier from Cal Poly in San Luis Obispo (rival schools!) with a degree in Engineering and was working as a manufacturing engineer for a medical device company in Newport Beach.

On an instant connection

Some magical mixture of new UCSB friendships, hometown connections and that particular weekend’s surf conditions landed Pat and me together on a camping trip in Jalama beach. Amidst the smokey campfire, salty sea air and 10/10 company, we instantly fell for each other.

I was enamoured by Pat’s many passions (cars, photography and surfing to name a few) and general zest for life. We belly laughed every time we were together, and haven’t stopped laughing since.

On making it work – and a transatlantic adventure

Over the next year, we dated long-distance, commuting through LA traffic each weekend to see each other (okay, Pat definitely did more of the driving!).

When I found out I’d been accepted to medical school at the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland, I nervously rang Pat to tell him I’d be moving across the world that summer. His response? “I guess we’re moving to Ireland!” I was thrilled.

Pat’s grandparents were born and raised in Galway and Cavan, and much of his family still lives here today. An Irish citizen, Pat was able to find a job here in Dublin as a reliability engineer for a pharmaceutical company while I began my first year of Graduate Entry Medicine at RCSI.

On falling for Ireland

We quickly established our community here, which made the past two years away from our families due to pandemic restrictions a little bit easier.

This past weekend, we were invited to join our best friends’ annual trip to Other Voices in Dingle. We were delighted with the invite and packed our bags to return to one of our favourite spots in Ireland. The last time we’d been was during a 12-day van trip around the southwest coast a year prior when we were spoiled with the most beautiful sunset driving in over the Conor Pass.

On a proposal with a view

We had a gorgeous weekend meeting new friends, listening to live music and enjoying the magic of the west. We set off late Sunday afternoon to drive back to Dublin with our closest pal, Thérése, when Pat pulled into the car park at the top of the Conor Pass.

He asked Thérése to take a photo of us, and before I knew it he was on one knee with the most beautiful Sparkle in the Wild ring in that unmistakable pink box!

On a love affair with Chupi (and hiding that little pink box)

I was first introduced to Chupi by Thérése in 2018, and haven’t gone a Christmas without her jewellery since. Pat and I went to the Powerscourt store once briefly to look at rings but never spoke of it much again.

Turns out that only a week after that, Pat had apparently gone back to handpick the most uniquely beautiful grey diamond to be set in a gold polished band. For almost five months, it hid in one of his camera lens cases in our tiny city centre apartment! I had no clue.

On saying goodbye

As graduation nears and we prepare to move back to America for my residency training in emergency medicine, our hearts ache to leave Ireland. This was our first home together, and will forever be our most treasured place.

I’m so lucky I get to wear this special heirloom as a reminder of our Irish adventure –  the beautiful landscape, the kindest people and the silkiest stouts – for the rest of my life.

And as for the wedding? We’re still looking for our perfect spot somewhere near the sea!

Did you get engaged using a sparkling Chupi piece? Find out how to apply to be featured in our Modern Love Stories series.

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