Three and a half years ago, Gisele Cunha put her picture on Facebook, not just as a profile picture, but also on the Facebook app, "Hot or Not" (from the website of the same name). The Brazilian flight attendant had broken up with her boyfriend and wanted to "get back into the dating game and meet some new people."
The dating game turned out be a pretty G.U. (geographically undesirable) one when she heard from a sales executive in South Wales who was taken with her "beautiful smile." But Gavin Jenkins was undeterred by distance. Months of instant messaging, emailing and Skyping led to a first meeting in person, then subsequent rendevous, and recently their marriage. The couple, now living in Wales, has been proclaimed by The Daily Mirror as "the world’s first Hot or Not bride and groom."
Jenkins told the newspaper that their online chats covered just about everything: "... our families, our hopes and dreams, and we found we had a lot in common, like we both love travelling.
“I felt like I’d known Gisele my whole life. I had fallen for her in a big way.”
She landed a job in England in April 2008, and the couple finally met in person.
"All Gavin’s pictures on Facebook were of him kissing kangaroos or pulling strange faces on his travels so I wasn’t entirely sure what to expect," she told the newspaper. "But the second I saw him, standing there in flip flops and shorts despite the freezing cold weather, I knew he was The One.”
Cunha said that she used to "mock" her friends who looked for love online, and "I would never have imagined that’s how I’d meet my husband. Uploading that picture was the best thing I ever did."
For his part, Jenkins gives true romantics reason for more stars in their eyes: "You have no idea who is out there waiting for you — even on the opposite side of the world. It’s clear that Gisele and I were meant to be together and I believe everything happens for a reason."
And, he adds: "I have a lot to thank Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg for. He helped me find my soulmate — I definitely owe him a pint."
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