It all started at the end of the year Computer Science Department party at the University of Idaho in April of 1999. Andy was standing on his crutches near the food and Alecia was eating the food and the two struck up a conversation. In the next week and a half before Andy graduated, Andy and Alecia created a bond that would overcome a long distance romance that spanned from Victor, Idaho to Vancouver, Washington with many places in between since Andy was traveling to every small county seat this side of the Mississippi for his job.
The two made a pact to get jobs in the same city. Seattle, Portland and Boise composed the short list and and Boise was eventually chosen. The transition was as easy as many life changes at once can be since both grew up in the city and had all of their families living there already.
The couple moved into and remodeled a home on 17th Street in historic Boise. Alecia found the home too charming to pass up and purchased the home before Andy had propsed. It was her pre-marriage test to Andy to see if he really would stay with her through thick and thin. The remodel was pretty hairy and included everything from utter demolition of the kitchen and bathroom to replacing the sewer pipe. One night, shortly after Halloween in 2002, Andy was found in the alley with Alecia’s plumber cousin, Scott, digging down to the sewer intake, literally covered in shit. It was at that moment, as Alecia stood crying in the alley that she knew he passed her thick and thin test.
Less than a year later at the Shaffer Butte lookout above Bogus Basin ski resort, overlooking the entire city, Andy proposed to a surprised Alecia. Sassy the black lab was there to witness Alecia’s tears of joy. Alecia called her overjoyed family and will never have trouble remembering her sister Anna’s response of, “shut the f*ck up.”
On March 31, 2001, the happy couple was married at St. Mary’s Church in Boise, Idaho. It was a joyous occassion of which the biggest concern of the day was Alecia’s in that she was nervous about tripping going down the aisle. One of the most memorable moments of the reception was Andy’s rendition of the caterpillar on the dance floor, followed by Andy’s sister Erin and friend Freddie’s dance number to Michael Jackson’s classic, “Thriller”.
The year 2002 had both Alecia and Andy participating in all sorts of races of the running, biking and swimming sort. Marathons, 10Ks, 1/2 Ironman Duathlons and Tris, you name it. Between the house remodel and the races, the couple looked forward to a change of pace.
That change of pace came in January of 2003 when they moved to Guadalajara, Mexico with their two dogs, Gus and Sassy. Their “casa” was an enormous, tile-filled home in El Palomar. During the year, they recieved many visitors who they happily took to the beach and gave tours of the city. Alecia and Andy went to the beach over 17 times that year and picked up their love for travel as they went to Cancun, Puerto Vallarta, Manzanillo, Mexico City, Leon, Guanajuato and more. They also fell in love with the Mexican people and culture and made many lifelong friends. To this day some of their fondest memories are from this year.
Tired of working on the house on 17th, they sold it and bought a new house on 21st St. sight unseen while they were still in Mexico. They moved back to the United States in 2004 and the following couple of years found Alecia very busy working on her MBA while working full time. Andy took care of everything else and kept Alecia sane.
The year 2006 brought another living abroad opportunity in Shanghai, China. In October of that year, they moved to the enormous city of over 20 million inhabitants into the 35th floor of an apartment megaplex along the Huang Pu River. Like Guadalajara, they experienced the luxury of a maid who cleaned three days of week. In Shanghai there was an added luxury of their driver, Rocky.
Living in Shanghai was quite an adventure for the couple. It was a this point that they started a blog. The topics varied from their new found passion of sailing to acrobatic massages and exotic travels. While living in China, they traveled more than ever before visiting such places as Singapore, Hong Kong, Macau, Harbin, Beijing, Guilin, Xi’an, Xiamen, Hainan Island, Thailand, Dubai, the Maldives, Vietnam, Cambodia, Italy and Germany. The more they saw, the more they wanted to see.
Alecia moved back to the states for a new Project Management role in May of 2008. Andy came to visit her in July at which time, their daugher, Belén was conceived. When Alecia called Andy to tell him the news, his response was, “we sure didn’t get to try for very long.” Andy moved back in September and spent the next eight months taking extra special care of his pregnant wife.
Their daughter Belén was born by c-section, due to her breach position, on April 28, 2009. She is a happy, active baby who loves to be a part of any conversation. She is blessed with so many people who love her and know she is the greatest gift ever.
One of Alecia and Andy’s favorite things to do with Belén is to take her on adventures. And so the adventures of the Hoobings, with Belén continue and will be chronicled in this blog.