It was love at first flight.
Last week, 24-year-old Irishman Jamie Kelly hit it off with the Canadian woman sitting next to him on a Ryanair flight from Barcelona to Dublin. The two engaged in an animated conversation throughout the ride, but lost sight of each other after they landed and got separated at customs.
Kelly knew the young lady’s name was Katie and that she was from Nova Scotia, but he failed to get any additional details that would be useful in tracking her down.
But that was enough information for two friends who launched on his behalf a #loveatfirstflight and #findkatie campaign on Twitter.
Gerard Blaine, the friend who helped start the campaign, said Kelly “has just been unlucky in love in the past.” But his pal's fortune appeared to have turned once he returned from his journey abroad.
“He called out to my house to tell me about the trip and all he could talk about was the Canadian girl,” Blaine told TODAY.com.
The campaign caught the attention of the media, leading Kelly to appear on Canadian news outlets, including CBC News, hoping to find someone who could identify his sweet Katie.
It worked. Katie's sister heard the story, got in touch with Kelly and helped facilitate a meeting between the two, set for Wednesday.
Katie Moreau is the full name of the mysterious woman who was unaware of the search because she had been traveling through the Irish countryside in places with limited Internet access.
Moreau said she actually went looking for that “good-looking man” she sat next to on the airplane after they lost sight of each other at customs.
“I thought I might have scared him off actually from all the talking, so I just kept going through,” she said Tuesday during a radio interview with Ireland's TODAY FM. She did spend some time searching for him at the airport but “decided I didn’t want to look too desperate so I kept going.”
The pair reunited on the radio show Tuesday for the first time since they were separated last week. Moreau asked Kelly if he was sure he would come see her.
“I don’t think I would have went to all this trouble if I wasn’t going to,” Kelly replied.
Moreau said she was shocked when she emerged from her Wi-Fi seclusion this week to find so much attention centered on her. Several news websites have posted photos of Kelly and Moreau taken from various social media accounts.
“I’m very flattered by it all," Moreau said during her radio interview. "It’s a bit weird, but I’m more flattered by anything."
Kelly, meanwhile, has been "a bit baffled by all the attention," his friend Blaine told TODAY.com.
"But he is definitely enjoying his moment in the limelight," he said. "Hopefully him and Katie get on well tomorrow on their date and keep in touch over the Atlantic."