Margo Lauterbach and Davis Farvolden had two weddings. Last Feb. 19, with two acquaintances as witnesses, they exchanged vows in the front yard of their home in Australia, where they lived while attending medical school. The weather was hot, the bride wore blue and they celebrated afterward with dinner at a seaside restaurant.
Exactly 11 months later, at the Cloisters in Brooklandville, they said the same vows in front of 100 guests. A layer of snow covered everything outside, and they followed the ceremony with dinner, dancing and a tower of cupcakes.
"There were so many ... friends all in the same room," says Margo. "It was so special."
The couple met in a 1996 preparatory class for medical-school exams. Between study sessions Margo, who grew up in Timonium, showed Davis, from Calgary, Alberta, Canada, the sights of Baltimore. He was in town for a volunteer research position at Johns Hopkins Hospital.
"The first thing I noticed was we can definitely laugh together," says Davis.
Their relationship continued with calls and visits after Margo returned to the University of California, Santa Barbara, and Davis, a graduate of the University of Montana, went home to Calgary. Soon, Davis was accepted to medical school at Flinders University in Adelaide, South Australia, and decided to go there when the term started in January.
"I was so happy for him getting to follow his dream to be a doctor," says Margo.
On a spring trip to see him, Margo met with Flinders' admissions personnel and felt good about her chances to get in. She moved to Australia that summer and a few months later was accepted to the medical school.
The couple says their relationship was an important source of support during medical school in a foreign country. Says Davis: "We always had someone to turn to and someone to remind us of home."
"We have similar values and a similar sense of humor," adds Margo. "We understand each other."
The couple enjoys golf, running and skiing as well as attending plays and sporting events. They also like to travel.
On a trip to Malaysia in 2000, to celebrate the end of the school year, Davis surprised Margo by proposing. In Langkawi, they were watching the sun set over the water from the porch of their hotel room when Davis gave Margo an engagement ring he had been hiding in his luggage.
"It was the most romantic thing ever," says Margo. "I couldn't believe something could go on behind my back so well."
The couple knew they would have to wait for a wedding with all their friends and family back in North America, but they decided not to delay the marriage. Two months after they became engaged -- with their parents' long-distance blessings -- Margo and Davis opted for a simple, private ceremony. When they returned to Baltimore last July, they planned a larger event.
The two, who live in Phoenix, plan to pursue their medical careers in the Baltimore area. Margo, 26, will look for a residency in psychiatry. Davis, 29, is an intern at Good Samaritan Hospital.
But their careers won't stop them from seeing the world. "We want to just keep traveling," says Margo, "and keep laughing."
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