Sometimes we encounter people, even perfect strangers, who begin to interest us at first sight even before a word has been spoken. This was exactly the case for Vickie Moretz in February 1982 when she came across a stranger who rocked her world completely.
Vickie who was 22 years old at the time had just graduated from the University of Tennessee and as someone who had never left the shores of her native Southern part of the US, a trip to London for a work-study program she had been selected to participate in was a different kind of experience for her.
Vickie Moretz and her friend, Sandra almost never got on the London-bound flight
The 22-year-old who was traveling in the company of one of her friends, Sandra was so excited about the journey that they packed almost two large suitcases. However, the two ladies would have never made it onto the flight if the plane was full to its capacity. Vickie explained to CNN Travel that they had purchased standby tickets majorly because it was cheap, a decision that could have ended their dream. “I didn’t even know what the word standby meant,” she told the outlet. “All I knew was I got a really good deal. I didn’t know you had to go to check in – I didn’t know what you were supposed to do.”
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The ladies got the shock of their lives when they were informed that their tickets did not reserve them space on the flight. Anxious and panicking, they spoke with the staff of the airport stating that none of them had ever traveled out of the US before. The staff pitied them and Sandra was allowed on the plane first before Vickie was admitted a few minutes later.
The 22-year-old was in for another shock when she got onboard the plane and discovered that she got a seat next to Sandra. “They took me through first class, walked me all the way around the back of the plane,” Vickie further explained. “Came around, tossed my luggage into a seat, it hit the person next to them, she turned around and it was my girlfriend.”
Vickie Moretz meets Graham
As soon as Vickie settled down on the plane, Sandra introduced her to a stranger whom she had struck up a conversation with before Vickie’s arrival. “This is Graham,” she said. “He’s from England.” The man who rocked a green sweater and curly red hair also returned the pleasantries. The trio engaged in a discussion and they realized that Graham was from Lancashire in North England and had graduated from the University of Leeds the year before. They also discovered that just like them, he had also bought a standby ticket.
Graham also revealed to CNN Travel that he was happy at meeting the two lovely young ladies. “They were exhausted and worn out, but obviously excited to be reunited on the plane,” he told the outlet. “And we just got chatting.” Vickie revealed that they had a swell time as Graham told them stories about his native country, England while he was also interested in knowing about how life was in the American South. “We had the best laughs,” she told CNN Travel. “We stayed awake all night long – and that was our second night of staying awake, Sandra and I because we’d been awake the night before trying to get to the airport. And he was lovely. He was just immediately a good friend.”
However, Vickie disclosed that even though she liked Graham, she thought he was her friend’s type of man. “He had curly red hair back then – it was a perm, it wasn’t real – and my girlfriend adores curly headed guys. So I thought, ‘Oh good, Sandra’s met her somebody.'”
At the end of their trip, Graham made a promise to the ladies to come to London to see them after meeting with his family up North. “We were excited that he was going to show us around,” Vickie said. “He gave us the history of England all night long.”
Graham also stated that he could not take a pass on seeing them again because he enjoyed their company.” I enjoyed educating the girls and introducing them to my country,” he said. “Couldn’t believe my luck that I got to sit next to two beautiful blondes, and certainly looked forward to seeing them again. I made firm plans to visit before I left them that first day.”
The new friends departed for their various destinations after landing in the UK but not before Graham had treated the ladies to their first cup of British tea and also took pictures together. “While we were having the tea and he was getting ready to leave, we were saying, ‘Oh, no.’ He’d become our best friend,” Vickie explained. “And we’re thinking, ‘Oh, we hate leaving him.’ So I said, ‘Well, we’ve got to get pictures.”
Vickie also revealed further that even though she noticed that there was a difference between the photographs Graham took with both of them, she didn’t think too much about it. “I was still thinking he was more for Sandra instead of me,” she said. “But in our picture – he took the same picture with Sandra and their hands are further apart – and of course in ours, our hands are right up against each other, which is rather funny. I guess it was looking ahead at things to come.”
The friends meet again
The ladies’ first week in London was very hectic as they were in a different environment and working at a job they knew almost nothing about. “I had a BS in business management, as well as a minor in computer science and one in real estate,” Vickie said. “I’d rarely made up my own bed and come over there to be a chambermaid. So we were very nervous about starting work there.”
However, things got better for them when Graham contacted them through one of his friends living in London and set up a meeting. “He arranged to meet up with them and took them out for a drink. And I immediately got my train ticket to come back down that next weekend,” Graham stated. “So that was the plan. And there was no doubt I was going to do it.”
The next weekend, the two ladies went sightseeing around London in the company of Graham and his friend. “We were all running around. We had the best time. We all got along so well, and we were joking and laughing,” Vickie wrote in her diary. “Our friendship with these guys was just so easy as if we had known them for years.”
A stranger confirms Vickie Moretz and Graham’s love
Vickie was still of the opinion that her friend, Sandar was into Graham until a woman approached them without notice while they were riding the escalator. “You’re both Scorpios,” the woman said, and Vickie replied, “Yes, ma’am, I am,” as she was unaware of Graham’s birthday, let alone his zodiac sign. However, Graham also replied that he was a Scorpio.
The stranger smiled and told them what future awaits them, “You will make great love and will always be together.” the stranger revealed. “Graham and I looked at one another, completely confused, and nearly tripped off the escalator,” Vickie described the moment in her diary. “We got the biggest kick out of that, We laughed and couldn’t wait to tell Sandra and Jim about it. We thought that was so funny.”
However, the statement from the stranger became the beginning of their love life. “By the end of that evening, we were holding hands,” Vickie said. “That was March 6. And then we were engaged July 4, and married December 28.”