When David Swann, 70, & Kath Foreman, 69, met on a Fiji Airways flight from Melbourne to Nadi, they weren’t expecting the journey would also lead to love.
A cancelled flight, some coincidental seating allocations and a trip to paradise later, just a year on from their trip the pair are now happily married.
When David’s flight from Melbourne to Fiji was cancelled last May, the airline provided accommodation at the airport’s hotel while the aircraft was sorted out and deemed ready to fly.
Along with other passengers affected by the cancellation, was Kath, a traveller of similar age.
The pair began talking at the airport while they awaited their rescheduled flight and by chance were seated nearby one another when they finally boarded the aircraft.
“We found that we were sitting one row apart from each other,” David said.
But that wasn’t quite close enough for the bachelor who was headed to paradise.
After chatting to staff, he was able to shuffle seats and the two “continued chatting and getting to know each other throughout the flight”.
The five-hours flight provided plenty of time for the two to learn as much about each other as they possibly could before landing.
When they touched down in Fiji, they went their separate ways — David headed off to Matamanoa Island while Kathleen continued on to Suva where her brother lives.
David said the Matamanoa Island held a special place in his heart and Kath was in no position to change her family plans, but they promised to contact each other upon their return to Australia.
Despite parting ways, they “were secretly aware something special had taken place,” according to David.
The 70-year-old returned home after spending 12 days in Fiji and Kath came back three weeks after that.
What happened next was a whirlwind of passionate decision making and the definition of following one’s heart.
“Four days after arriving home in Mildura, Kath drove 740km to Apollo Bay to see me and to find out if the feelings she had were reciprocated,” David said.
“After almost a month of dating, I asked Kath to marry me”.
The pair who instantly hit it off have proved to their family and friends that time is truly of the essence, particularly later in life.
“We don’t have any time to waste!” David said.
“We were married on the 9th March 2019 on the beach near our home in Apollo Bay surrounded by family and friends.”
The pair are set to return to Fiji this May, one year after their fateful meeting and thank Fiji Airways who have provided them with flights.
“Both Kath and I often look at each other and shake our heads and wonder that this whole, wonderful situation came about because of a cancelled flight!”