Aimee Was Looking for a Lifetime of Adventure. She Found it With James. 

By Dina Cheney

In January 2016, Aimee, who works in advertising, was on holiday in Turkey. She’d recently joined Bumble in search of “a bit of fun and a few dates,” and didn’t stop her hunt while on vacation. She scrolled through Bumble in Travel Mode, hoping to find a match who was also based in London. She came across James’ profile, and was drawn in by his smile—as well as photos of him skiing and running in a muddy obstacle course. The two shared a love of adventure, Aimee sensed.

When James, an architect, came across Aimee’s profile, he was drawn in by a photo of her “doing a funky dance,” he remembers. He thought she seemed attractive, quirky, and fun. Once they matched, Aimee sent an upbeat message asking James a question about one of his photos. Then, the two began chatting, discussing their pastimes and Aimee’s Turkish vacation. “The conversation flowed, and we just clicked,” Aimee remembers. In July of that year, after a month of messaging each other, they decided to move their conversation off Bumble and have their first date.

When Aimee texted James directions to the bar where they’d agreed to meet, she mistakenly sent him a link to a funny viral video of cats with boobs that she’d saved on her phone. James, who thought Aimee was testing him, was charmed by what he perceived as her kookiness. When they first saw each other outside a London tube station, Aimee was quiet, embarrassed for having accidentally sent the video. But, when James teasingly asked her about it, they started laughing, then segued to a free-flowing conversation over drinks and dinner. “We talked nonstop, and I felt completely at ease,” recalls Aimee. “It just felt different from all the other dates I’d been on.” 

James and Aimee stood smiling in front of a scenic background

Although James sensed they’d really connected, Aimee’s farewell at the end of the date felt brief. “I thought she was great, but after that goodbye, I was wondering if I’d read everything wrong,” James remembers. “I wasn’t yet sure about the date,” says Aimee. “I liked him, but I was letting it sink in a bit.” 

During their second date later that week, at a Mexican restaurant, the conversation felt just as natural. As they discussed meaningful topics like their shared emphasis on family, James noticed Aimee smiling at him—and knew he’d made a positive impression. He was correct: on that very date, Aimee realized James was right for her. “Our conversation felt quite deep and meaningful,” she says. “We talked about who we are and what we stand for and our families. We’d talked a lot online about general stuff, but on this date we got to it—what made us us— pretty quickly.” Later that rainy night, they had their first kiss under an umbrella by the tube station. 

From then on, the couple became exclusive and went on a handful of dates, trying all kinds of activities. In London, they watched movies and theater performances, attended gigs, and visited galleries. On weekends, they hiked, cycled, and explored historic homes in the countryside. Soon, they also began traveling together. Since photography is a shared interest, they always brought their cameras. As they began vacationing as a couple, they learned they were even more compatible than they’d realized: both Aimee and James like to explore and take “a slightly untrodden path,” says James. For example, when they were navigating Mexico by bus, they biked through deep water just to get a peek at some flamingos. “It was so worth it for the photos we got,” says Aimee. “Aimee is always willing to give adventure a go,” adds James affectionately. 

Aimee and James soon learned they met challenges well together, along with sharing good times. When James broke his collarbone during a cycling accident, Aimee supported him through his hospital stay and recovery. “It really scared me seeing him in the back of the ambulance and the hospital,” says Aimee. “I realized that I wanted to keep him safe and look after him.” Then, when Aimee started a new job in 2021, James had her back. She vented her frustrations and doubts to James, who reassured her.

After two years of dating, Aimee and James decided it was time to try living together. First, James moved in with Aimee and her friends for a couple of months. Then, they found their own place. The pandemic lockdown was a real test, says Aimee—one that they both passed. “We didn’t really argue,” she says. “We got on really well and it just worked really well.” 

The couple was so content that they bought a house in a London suburb, moving in with James’ parents while they renovated it. As the years went by, the couple’s bond became increasingly strong, leading James to decide to propose. James wanted to keep the proposal plan a secret, but it was Aimee who surprised him with a getaway to the picturesque Deal Pier, at the seaside in Kent for his birthday in September 2022. Before dinner, James suggested that they walk to a nearby pier to catch the sunset and take a selfie. While there, he got down on one knee and proposed. Shocked, she said “yes,” then added, “but, it’s your birthday!” James replied, “That’s all I want for my birthday.” 

The couple, now living in their renovated home, got married in April 2023. Their venue was a large manor house in the British countryside and they celebrated with an intimate group of family and friends. Whatever their pastimes, Aimee and James will always enjoy spending time together. “A friend of mine told me Aimee and I are the same person, I’m just a louder version,” James jokes. “Maybe we’re turtledoves. We’re intertwined.”