Wednesday 21 November 2018

Couple who travelled to Ireland to marry stranded in Kerry by Storm Ophelia

"It's a story we will remember forever"

Carlos and Paula Castillo at their wedding last week
Carlos and Paula Castillo at their wedding last week

Mary McDonnell

A NEWLYWED couple who travelled from Canada to tie the knot in Ireland ended up stranded in County Kerry, braving a fierce storm rather than taking romantic strolls on the beach.

Carlos Castillo (39) and Paula Castillo (37) flew in from Vancouver three weeks ago with no knowledge a hurricane would form in the Atlantic and batter the country in the middle of their honeymoon.

The pair seem to be cursed when it comes to weather: an avalanche occurred moments after Mr Castillo proposed to his future wife atop a mountain range in Chile last year and Storm Eva swept across the country on his first visit to Ireland in 2015.

They’re currently holed up in The Moorings Guesthouse in Portmagee, Kerry but insist they’re "having a blast" with the staff in the near-deserted hotel.

Ms Castillo, who's originally from Clontarf in Dublin, told "It was a bit of drama. It’s a story we’ll remember forever.

"But we couldn't have been in a better spot. We’re adventurous souls. It was a bit of excitement this morning, the staff here are amazing.”

She said the hurricane has made no dent in the romance of the getaway – even though her husband waited up all night on hurricane watch and spent the day helping an RTE cameraman film for the news.

She said: "He probably thinks we’re all mad in Ireland. Everyone’s waiting for this big storm.

"We definitely didn’t expect this but I think we’re in a good spot. He’s new to Ireland. He’s getting to see the wild Atlantic side of it.”

She said bad luck seems to follow them around when it comes to their union.

Carlos and Paula Castillo
Carlos and Paula Castillo

"He proposed in Chile last year," she said. "We were sitting on a small mountain range (Torres del Paine). Right after there was a small avalanche on a mountain range across from us. We’ve had some energetic weather following us for the last while."

Mr Castillo said the bad weather hasn’t dented his love for Ireland and they plan to move back here together permanently.

He said: "It’s been great. Four seasons in one day here. We get earthquakes (in Canada) but I have never experienced a hurricane before.

"We love it here anyway, we’re going to move back here.

"We did go for a drive but we decided to stay in and have the craic here. They’ve been very lovely. We’ve just been hanging with the staff.

"I was up all night waiting for the storm. I was outside taking videos, being a cameraman for an RTE reporter who was here.”

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