Brad and Nancy’s common denominator
Tuesday, February, 13 2007
By Angel H. Javier
How the hunk from Down Under and the Canadian-born sweetheart found love in Manila
He is from Gold Coast, Australia, and she is from Winnipeg, Canada, but as fate has it, Brad Turvey and Nancy Castiglione found love in the romantic city of Manila eight months ago.
Theirs were not a love-at-first-sight type of thing. What started out as a cool and friendly relationship four years ago blossomed naturally into an enviable romance in June 2006. And since then, the handsome couple have found comfort and caring companionship in each other away from their homelands.
Brad and Nancy, both celebrities on the entertainment and commercial scenes, believe in making the most out of their young lives and both agree that doing things together will strengthen their equally young and budding romance.
Sharing hobbies and learning new things are a few of their secrets in getting to know one another better and thus making their relationship’s so-called honeymoon stage more exciting, and hopefully, a lasting one.
Since Brad is a certified diver and instructor, he encouraged Nancy to get back into the sport and shortly after, she earned her own diving certificate. Nancy is fond of traveling. Without having to lovingly persuade him like most women do to get what they want, she and Brad now explore the beauty of the Philippine Islands like tourists visiting a foreign destination. Lucky for them, their individual leisure activities complement each other therefore making it easier for the energetic twosome to enjoy both.
Another meaningful activity they took on recently was the task given by QTV 11’s At Your Service, Star Power wherein Brad and Nancy organized a Junior-Senior prom for a national high school in Boracay, whose students never felt the prom fever because nobody in their town had sufficient means to plan one. The couple also hosted an exciting dating game and a speed dating activity for the youth to socialize and mingle. A sense of fulfillment and a chance to give back to even just a few young Filipino viewers something to cherish are the realizations they both gained from this undertaking. Although others may have considered a tedious job was a fun-filled and rewarding experience for both.
On this Valentine week, Brad and Nancy impart their views on relationships, celebrity romance and the sweet (and sometimes sour) moments that inevitably come with this little thing called love.
On being friends before lovers
Brad: This is actually the first time a relationship happened in this way for me. I guess there are more advantages than disadvantages to being close friends before being lovers. For example you have better foundation on which to build the relationship on. You know and understand each other better since you know the “real” person as a friend without the act of putting your best foot forward as most do during the “courting” stage. Added to this is my belief that the best of lovers should also be the best of friends. This means being able to trust each other and be comfortable talking to each other about anything.
Nancy: I’ve always been formally courted, and got to know the guy with his best foot forward. Although being courted has its advantages, I now feel the disadvantages are far greater.
Brad and I had a unique friendship in that he usually only got to see and experience the emotional side of me when I would call him to hang out to vent about my relationships. We never went out on fun gimmicks, only coffee or dinner, which were basically therapy sessions for me. During those talks he was able to witness the brat in me, and learn about my wants and dislikes in relationships. I was able to see that he was a good listener, patient and had good morals and values by the advice he would give me. The friendship we had made a great foundation for a serious romantic relationship and hopefully, one with a bright future. Flowers, candies and romantic dates don’t mean much when you’re with a person you hardly know.
Brad: Knowing when to tie the knot is never an exact science. It’s a combination of the right emotions, the right chemistry, good communication, a solid foundation and a willingness to commit 110 percent of your life to your partner and just pray she feels the same way.
Nancy: I believe in the saying “you just know.”
Finding a partner in a foreign land
Brad: I never thought it would happen to me. I grew up in Australia and thought I would spend the rest of my life there and end up marrying a Caucasian girl. I must admit that perhaps because of growing up in a Caucasian country and being exposed to the women there, I never found Asian girls appealing until the day I moved to the Philippines. All of a sudden my “love life” was turned upside down. I saw qualities in Filipinas that I loved. Loyalty, caring nature and healthy morals among others. Finding love in a foreign country also helps build a special bond since we’re both out of the comfort and security of our home countries.
Nancy: Finding love in a different country is a big plus. You have the opportunity to discover more about each other and the country together.
Different cultures and family backgrounds
Brad: Adjusting to each other’s culture and ways is something that took a bit of getting used to since Nancy is a mix of Italian and Filipino but grew up in Canada and I’m Chinese, Australian and Scottish and grew up in Australia. We have different priorities and some different values but we’ve learned to accept the differences and even enjoy the fireworks that our differences can create.
Nancy: Adjusting to Brad’s way of thinking wasn’t easy. He’s logical and straightforward while I’m emotional and sensitive. Therefore we tend to handle the same situations very differently. Fortunately, we had no problems adjusting to each other’s culture and traditions.
Family and friends
Brad: The role of family and friends in a relationship is very important in giving emotional support and often they provide a different perspective when it comes to sensitive situations. I would never be able to get through life without the support of my family and friends.
Nancy: It is very important to me that my family and friends like my boyfriend, and that my boyfriend’s family and friends like me. They are the people who have your best interests at heart and sometimes they really do know what’s best for you.
Celebrity couples in the public eye
Brad: Being a couple in the public eye is not and has never been a major deal for me. I’m never one to put on an act to please others nor do I let it affect my actions or decisions. I guess they just have to respect me for just being me.
Nancy: Celebrity couples have it very hard. That’s why Brad and I have tried to keep as much as possible to ourselves. We gave one TV interview as we feel it is our responsibility to let our fans know that it is true, but that’s it.
As modern role models for the youth
Brad: I stick to my ideal that I do things the same way whether people are watching or not.
Nancy: It’s important to both Brad and me to be a positive role model individually and as a couple as well.
Brad: After taping At Your Service I realized that with so many people deprived of many of life’s simple pleasures, there must be so many people who take those simple pleasures for granted. I have realized that although there are many people who are much better off in life than I am, we should never forget those who are in worse situations. It only takes a little effort from some to make a world of difference to others.
Nancy: Participating in the At Your Service activity was something I will remember forever. It was great to be able to give something back and make people happy. It made me realize that I would like to be more involved in charities and other public service organizations.
Barely a year into the relationship, they are learning, discovering and most of all enjoying the romantic partnership they have. There will be more challenges and adventures to come their way but with their vigor, dedication and love, Brad and Nancy hope to go a long way together.