While Andrew D’Alton Eversden was finding out overseas on the American University of Rome within the fall of 2017, certainly one of his professors supplied college students further credit score for volunteering. He selected to take action at a meet-and-greet occasion with a neighborhood refugee middle, which was how he discovered himself ready exterior an Italian authorities constructing within the metropolis on a September afternoon.
Rachel Dawn Wertz, a full-time scholar on the college, noticed Mr. Eversden instantly. Both Americans, Ms. Wertz, 25, stated she might inform that he was from the United States “just based on the running shoes and jeans” he was sporting.
“He had a baseball cap on, which you know, no one else not from the U.S. would wear that,” added Ms. Wertz, who had lived all over the world whereas rising up due to her father’s job.
She launched herself to Mr. Eversden, 24, who stated he “was surprised at how friendly she was and how genuinely interested she seemed like she was in getting to know me.” It didn’t harm that he discovered her to be “very, very pretty.”
Over the following few weeks the 2 continued to hang around as associates, and that November they traveled to Barcelona, Spain, with one other scholar. Each felt an attraction to the opposite, however even after a romantic night on the seaside in Barcelona, they saved their emotions to themselves.
“I think we both were under the understanding that I was staying and he was going back to the U.S.,” Ms. Wertz stated.
On Mr. Eversden’s final night time in Rome, he and Ms. Wertz went out to dinner to have fun the top of the semester. When she received house that night, she realized she wished to inform Mr. Eversden how she felt. A couple of hours earlier than his flight out of Italy, she known as him to admit her crush.
While completely happy to listen to from her, Mr. Eversden additionally felt “a little bit of heartbreak, because I was leaving for the airport in four hours, and I had known that I had met someone really special.”
They continued to talk within the months after Mr. Eversden resumed finding out at American University in Washington, however by the spring of 2018 they’d principally fallen out of contact. That August, each traveled to Paris — Mr. Everdsen for a trip, and Ms. Wertz to go to her brother — the place they reconnected in individual virtually a yr after first assembly.
“It actually didn’t go well at all,” Ms. Wertz stated. “I think the build up of the expectations kind of overwhelmed both of us.”
They didn’t speak for the following seven months.
In the spring of 2019, Ms. Wertz reached out Mr. Eversden to catch up. Both had plans to be in London that May and after they realized that their visits would overlap for a day, they determined to satisfy for dinner. At this reunion, each stated their romantic emotions got here dashing again.
After parting methods, “we both cried on our plane rides back,” Mr. Eversden stated. For the remainder of the varsity yr, Ms. Wertz stated she “just thought about Andrew the whole time.”
Following her commencement within the spring of 2020, Ms. Wertz determined to search for jobs in Europe and the U.S., together with in Washington, the place Mr. Eversden continued to reside after his commencement in 2019.
She instructed herself that if she received a job in a special metropolis, she would lastly power herself to maneuver on from him. After making use of to a whole bunch of positions, she was supplied a spot within the AmeriCorps program — and he or she was assigned to Washington.
When she instructed Mr. Eversden, he “just about fell out of my chair,” he stated.
Ms. Wertz relocated to town that June, and inside a month they had been formally relationship. She now works as a neighborhood advertising affiliate at Total Wine & More in Bethesda, Md. Mr. Eversden is a reporter for Breaking Defense in Washington.
In July 2021, he proposed in entrance of the Department of Education constructing in Washington, the American equal of the Italian authorities constructing the 2 met exterior of in Rome. The couple had been married April 17 at Villa Siena, an Italianate-style occasions venue in Gilbert, Ariz., earlier than Jordan Gustafson, a Presbyterian minister, and about 70 vaccinated company.