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A real-life dating fairytale: This blind date turns into a cross-country romance and brave leap

News_Love Stories_Kimberly Copley_Josh Rouse_February 2012
Josh Rouse and Kimberly Copley celebrated his completion of  the Texas State Board Exam with a cruise to Mexico. Courtesy Photo
News_Love Stories_Kimberly Copley_Josh Rouse_February 2012
Kimberly and Josh visiting the Houston Museum of Natural Science's butterfly pavilion. Courtesy Photo

Editor's note: During February, CultureMap is highlighting some great love stories as part of our Love Month special series. 

No, Kimberly Copley and Josh Rouse did not meet on Match.com as so many people ask when they learn that the couple's romance began long distance — 750 miles to be exact. They actually met on a blind date in Houston where Josh was a sophomore at South Texas College of Law and Kimberly was in town from Tallahassee on a business trip for the Florida Department of Health. 

"I enter this story as evidence that real-life fairytales do happen . . .  right in the middle of a perfectly ordinary life," Kimberly emailed.

 "We sized each other up over red wine and couldn't help but become completely enamored . . . Conversation was easy. We belly-laughed and had undeniable and palpable chemistry." 

She was in town for a week and asked a friend from college if there were any old friends around who could show her a good place for a glass of wine. Enter Josh. They were introduced via email. And on her first night in Houston, Josh met her in her hotel lobby.

"We sized each other up over red wine and couldn't help but become completely enamored . . . Conversation was easy. We belly-laughed and had undeniable and palpable chemistry."

They spent every free moment together that week. She cried on the flight back to Florida.

But time and space interfered. Some months later, they had a brief dinner between her connecting flights through Houston. Something seemed to be missing — but not everything. They started talking more often and made a concentrated effort to see each other every four to six weeks. He met her mom and stepdad in Florida. The young lovers went to Las Vegas together for her birthday.

"And so it went on for nine of the longest but most romantic months of my life," Kimberly wrote in her email.

Finally, the time had come for them to be really together. No more long-distance romance. Josh volunteered to take the bar exam in Florida. But Kimberly was ready for a change and a move out of Tallahassee. So in a brave turn, she began saving her dollars, quit her secure job, sold her furniture, packed up her 11-pound pooch and moved to Houston. 

Today, she is working on getting her R.N. and Josh is a landman attorney for an oil and gas brokerage firm. In April, they will celebrate two years of togetherness since that blind date. Their plans are to become engaged this year and get married back in Florida next fall. 

"Cheers to fearlessness and long-distance love," she concluded.

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