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First impressions just didn't last


When Meghan Moore and Michael Rizzo met as students at Loyola College, sparks flew. Passionate, lively, fiery sparks.

But they weren't the kind of which marriages are typically made. "We pretty much couldn't stand each other," said Meghan.

Although Meghan and Michael lived in the same apartment building and were in some of the same social circles, their story is not one of classic college sweethearts.

"I thought he was a loudmouthed, obnoxious New Yorker," said Meghan, who was born and raised in Maryland.

"She loved the Orioles," scoffed Michael, a lifelong Yankees fan from Queens, N.Y.

Which is why, when Meghan graduated from Loyola a semester early in the fall of 1997, there were no teary-eyed goodbyes with Michael. It was more like good riddance. "I moved on," she said. "I just figured I'd never see him again and I didn't care."

But a year later, Meghan and Michael were invited to a birthday party for a mutual friend. Stranded next to each other at the end of the dinner table, there was only one thing to do: Shelve the grudges and talk.

Much to their surprise, they hit it off.

"We had both grown up," said Meghan, who works in product development for a dental company. "We realized that we had a lot more in common than we thought."

A few months later, they started dating: enjoying romantic dinners, trips to the movies and to concerts -- one of their favorite outings. One concert they missed featured U2, their favorite rock band. When the group came to town, the tickets sold out quickly. Meghan was so disappointed that Michael vowed to make it up to her.

Last summer, after several months of planning, Michael asked Meghan to go sightseeing with him in Ireland. The day they arrived in Dublin, Meghan awoke from a nap -- jet-lagged and bleary-eyed -- to find Michael down on one knee, ring in hand.

After celebrating their engagement with some champagne, Michael popped the next big question: "Will you go to a U2 concert with me?"

That night Michael and Meghan joined about 80,000 fans in a valley below Slane Castle, just outside of Dublin, to hear U2 in concert. It was the first time the band had played in its hometown in 20 years.

"It was absolutely amazing," said Meghan. "I've never been to a concert like that before. Bono [the lead singer of U2] was just incredible."

After the concert, the couple spent 10 days touring Ireland before returning to their house in Lutherville, a Cape Cod-style residence they had purchased before their trip.

The couple, both 27, were married on Aug. 24 at St. Pius X Roman Catholic Church in Rodgers Forge in a traditional ceremony. The wedding was followed by a reception at the Cloisters, where Meghan used to play on the lawn with her father and three sisters.

How, according to Meghan and Michael, did their once-rancorous relationship turn romantic?

"Once we gave ourselves the chance to get to know each other, we became really great friends," said Michael, a programming analyst for United Parcel Service. "We're just so comfortable together."

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