A Travelife kind of sweet story, set in Paris and Chartres

One of my favorite sweet stories is how the journalist Kati Marton and the diplomat Richard Holbrooke met and got together. 
It’s such an innocent and Travelife sort of story that makes me smile whenever I remember it.
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Kati Marton was the ex-wife of anchorman Peter Jennings and and second wife of Holbrooke, who had worked as a key backstage conduit for several US presidents.

Richard Holbrooke passed away sometime back and his wife Kati recalled her life with him in a short but apparently highly recommended book called Paris: A Love Story


Their love story seemed terribly interesting and so very much a Travelife kind of story

Being both “citizens of the world,” their official first date wasn’t really dinner in some fancy bistro in Washington D.C, or a play or opera gala in Manhattan.
Instead it was a three-day trip to Chartres and the Loire Valley, plus a couple of days in Paris
Their best memory of this first date was sitting in Chartres Cathedral admiring the magnificent stained glass windows and imagining how early piligrims must’ve been amazed by such a sight.
They simply traveled together rather than being romantically involved, and they focused more on enjoying being together and discovering new things. 

It was really an extended and rather glamorous version of a grown-up first date — he was in his 50s and she was in her 40s, after all, and both had careers and lives of their own.
But by the end of their five days together, she writes that they were finally holding hands while walking the streets of Paris.

I thought this was very sweet, simple and human, considering the complicated lives they led and especially for a glamorous couple who lived so much of their lives in the spotlight, among the rich, famous and powerful. 

Bill Clinton had helped them move and Pakistan’s president had given Kati some advice on bereavement when Richard Holbrooke had finally passed away.
Yes, they found happiness and got married. 

Richard Holbrooke became the US Ambassador to the United Nations and together they became the “it” couple of New York. 
They were both smart, cultured and vivacious for life, and apparently they hosted the most interesting dinners. Everyone from Whoopi Goldberg to Nelson Mandela accepted their dinner invitations. 
It was their golden age and how nice that they had found each other for this.
It wasn’t a completely perfect life — whose life is? — but it came pretty close to this. 
And they lived fairly happily for 15 years together
Yes, second chances are possible and true love can happen at any age, Marton writes.

And, if I might dare to add, especially when you’re in Paris, living your own version of a never-ending, and never-endingly eventful Travelife.