Love truly knows no bounds. Throughout our lives, we meet people who have all different kinds of effects on us. Sure, some folks we can’t stand to be around, but others sweep us off of our feet and make us want to spend an eternity with them. This feeling of unprecedented love is, perhaps, the greatest gift we can receive.
Maria Garcia and her husband, Miguel Restrepo, met on the streets of Medellin, Colombia. They were both drug addicts at the time and on the verge of giving up, but together, they found the strength to persevere and kick their addictions.
There’s just one strange thing: twenty-two years later, they’re still living in the place where they found shelter—and it’s far from an ideal homestead…
Throughout our lifetime, we will meet a variety of people who will impact us in different ways. Occasionally, they’re negative, but for the most part, you can take something positive out of every interaction you have. And when you finally do meet the person that makes you fall madly in love, you know you’ve reached the pinnacle of human emotion.
Oscar E. / Flickr
When Maria Garcia met her husband, Miguel Restrepo, their lives were on the verge of irreparable disaster. Even though they had very little hope for the future, they knew they cared about each other more than life itself, and they wanted to try to make a relationship work amidst their struggles.
They lived in Medellin, Columbia, a place known for its violence and widespread narcotics trafficking. When Maria and Miguel first met each other, they were both struggling badly with drug addiction themselves.
To make matters even worse, neither one had any steady source of income or a family that wanted anything to do with them. They were on their own, so they decided to make a home in the unlikeliest spot imaginable…
…The sewer! It was there where they were able to come together to kick their addictions. When they were both living on their own, it was too difficult; there was too much temptation all around them. But together, they were able to support each other’s needs and goals.
You would think that, as their lives improved, they would have naturally wanted to move out of their sewer home and into something a little more practical. But not Maria and Miguel! They were perfectly fine right where they were.
It’s been 22 years since they first moved into their humble but comfortable underground abode, and they couldn’t be any happier with their living situation. Sure, it’s incredibly unconventional, but it has everything they need.
Access into their living quarters is directly on the street above them. They removed the heavy sewer grate that originally covered the manhole, and now they use a much lighter material so they can easily move it when they need to leave enter and exit their home.
They say that although their home is small, they are able to fit everything they need in it. It took a little getting used to at first, but they eventually acclimated to their new living space and learned how to organize their possessions efficiently.
Believe it or not, they actually have electricity down there, too! They own a handful of lights, a tiny space heater in case the temperature drops too low at night, and a little kitchen to do some light cooking if they need to.
Maria and Miguel even have a TV! They figured out a way to get a few channels on a small television set that belonged to Miguel. If you really think about all their amenities, they pretty much have what anyone living in an actual home has—just on a much smaller scale.
They even decorate their home for the holidays like everyone else. Because they don’t have much money, they will collect clutter that others are throwing away and refurbish them into their own festive decorations.
They say that the location is quiet, peaceful, and far from the bustle of the city. At this stage in their lives, they just want to live in a calm place void of stress so they can relax and spend time with each other.
Their dog, Blackie, keeps them company and acts as the guardian of the homestead. It’s always nice to have a furry friend around when things get tough. Blackie has managed to keep a smile on both of their faces, even during the hardest of times.
People who know them often ask if they ever think about leaving, and their answer is always a resounding “no.” They are perfectly content living underground in their homely sewer, and it seems like they’re going to stay that way for quite some time!
Some people might pity them for having to live in a sewer, but they should actually be envious of their happiness and contentment. All you really need to make a home is love… and maybe a TV!
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