Things That Matter

These Abuelos Met And Fell In Love During Quarantine And Now They’re Happily Married

Many think that being old means that people no longer get to enjoy the many things that young people can – like fall in love. Then, throw in a global health crisis in the form of a pandemic and many will say the odds are stacked even higher against you.

Well, one Brazilian couple – who have 196 years on Earth between the two of them – are proving that it’s never too late to find love. And they’re sending the Internet into a frenzy with their romance while giving hope to those of us who haven’t been so lucky in love.

A Brazilian couple have made headlines for getting married at a very advanced age.

Although finding love might not be high on most people’s priorities these days – as so many of us are focused on surviving the Covid-19 pandemic and a whirlwind presidential election – that’s exactly what one elderly couple from Brazil just did.

The story of Marcelino and Branca, both from São Paulo, Brazil, show us how we should never give up. At 100 and 96 respectively, they were just married and can’t wait to spend the rest of their lives together.

The couple met in a nursing home two years ago but during a Coronavirus-induced lockdown, the pair grew closer. Although in an interview with Telemundo, Marcelo says that he new Branca was the love of his life from the moment they first met.

Their marriage took place at a small ceremony in front of their own children, some of whom are more than 70 years old.

Because of Covid-19, the couple celebrated their love for one another with a small wedding ceremony attended by their closest relatives and a few close friends and roommates from the nursing home where they first met.

The incredible story has filled Marcelino and Branca with new life, joy and youth. So you know, it’s never too late to find love.

They’re not the only couple to have found love amid the pandemic!

Also out of Brazil, a couple who first met 55 years ago as teenagers have reunited and fallen in love all over again.

Antonia Leni and Paulino dos Santos had dated briefly when she was 16 and he was 15 – they say they were each other’s first love. After high school, they each followed their own paths, made their own lives, until fate appears to have brought them back together.

It all happened after Antonia, after being diagnosed with depression and having tried to commit suicide, was transferred to a mental health hospital in Sao Paulo, Brazil, to receive the best care, a place where Paulino also resided since he suffered an unfortunate accident.

He recognized her immediately and although it was difficult for him to get close to Antonia, little by little they began to remember their beautiful moments together in adolescence. On Valentine’s Day, Paulino surprised his beloved with a beautiful gold ring to ask for her hand and after nine months of engagement, the couple celebrated their wedding with the help of 100 volunteers, including his family and the staff of the nursing home.

How about you? Do you have any Coronavirus love stories? Or know somebody who does?

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Even Though He Couldn’t Cross The Border, This Abuelo Sang ‘Las Mañanitas’ To His Grandson From Across The Rio Grande

Things That Matter

Even Though He Couldn’t Cross The Border, This Abuelo Sang ‘Las Mañanitas’ To His Grandson From Across The Rio Grande

GUILLERMO ARIAS/AFP via Getty Images

Since the very beginning of the pandemic, we’ve been overwhelmed with stories about people being kept apart by the virus. But despite the challenges that so many of us have faced during this pandemic, we find a way to make things work. And that’s exactly what this grandfather (who lives near the U.S-Mexico border) did to make sure that we was able to spend time with his grandson as he celebrated his 4th birthday.

Thanks to travel restrictions they couldn’t be together but they found a way to celebrate.

A heartwarming video is trending on Mexican social media showing a grandfather making his way to the U.S.-Mexico border to wish his four-year-old grandson a happy birthday. Although they couldn’t be together because of travel restrictions thanks to COVID-19, the grandfather managed to sing the traditional Mexican birthday song Las Mañanitas to his grandson, who listened from the other side of the Rio Grande in Piedras Negras, Coahuila.

The user who uploaded the video to YouTube identified the man as Isidro González and his grandson as Santiago.

With microphone, keyboard and speakers in Eagle Pass, Texas, Grandpa asks about his grandson. “Santiago, where are you? He raises his hand” and the video shows Santi. “I love you. I love you very much ”, you can hear the grandfather shouting and the grandson replies that he does too.

“Congratulations, Santiago. He is turning 4 years old ”, says the grandfather and the singing begins.

For many families residing in Eagle Pass and Piedras Negras, the pandemic restrictions imposed by the United States have meant they cannot cross the border to see family. González did not let that stop him from wishing his grandson a very happy birthday.

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Mexicans Travel To U.S. For ‘Vaccine Tourism’ Say It’s A Matter Of Survival

Things That Matter

Mexicans Travel To U.S. For ‘Vaccine Tourism’ Say It’s A Matter Of Survival

Jorge Saenz / AP / Getty Images

The United States is one of the world’s most successful countries when it comes to rolling out the COVID-19 vaccine program. So far, more than 200 million vaccines have been administered across the U.S. and as of this week anyone over the age of 16 is now eligible.

Meanwhile, in many countries around the world – including Mexico – the vaccine roll out is still highly restricted. For many, who can afford to travel, they see the best option at a shot in the arm to take a trip to the U.S. where many locations are reporting a surplus in vaccines.

Wealthy Latin Americans travel to U.S. to get COVID vaccines.

People of means from Latin America are chartering planes, booking commercial flights, buying bus tickets and renting cars to get the vaccine in the United States due to lack of supply back in their home countries. Some of those making the trip include politicians, TV personalities, business executives and a soccer team.

There is an old Mexican joke: God tells a Mexican he has only a week left to live but can ask for one final wish, no matter how outrageous. So the Mexican asks for a ticket to Houston—for a second opinion.

Virginia Gónzalez and her husband flew from Mexico to Texas and then boarded a bus to a vaccination site. They made the trip again for a second dose. The couple from Monterrey, Mexico, acted on the advice of the doctor treating the husband for prostate cancer. In all, they logged 1,400 miles for two round trips.

“It’s a matter of survival,” Gónzalez told NBC News, of getting a COVID-19 vaccine in the United States. “In Mexico, officials didn’t buy enough vaccines. It’s like they don’t care about their citizens.”

Mexico has a vaccine rollout plan but it’s been too slow in many people’s opinions.

With a population of nearly 130 million people, Mexico has secured more vaccines than many Latin American nations — about 18 million doses as of Monday from the U.S., China, Russia and India. Most of those have been given to health care workers, people over 60 and some teachers, who so far are the only ones eligible. Most other Latin American countries, except for Chile, are in the same situation or worse.

So vaccine seekers who can afford to travel are coming to the United States to avoid the long wait, including people from as far as Paraguay. Those who make the trip must obtain a tourist visa and have enough money to pay for required coronavirus tests, plane tickets, hotel rooms, rental cars and other expenses.

There is little that is fair about the global race for the COVID-19 vaccine, despite international attempts to avoid the current disparities. In Israel, a country of 9 million people, half of the population has received at least one dose, while plenty of countries have yet to receive any. While the U.S. could vaccinate 70 percent of its population by September 2021 at the current rollout rate, it could take Mexico until approximately the year 2024 to achieve the same results.

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