After This Woman Flew 500 Miles To Meet A Man, She Discovered It Was All A Cruel Prank

A romantic spark can make people act on impulse and do the most unexpected things in pursuit of love. As 24-year-old Sophie Stevenson from Stoke in central England can now readily testify with a heavy heart. In late September 2017, this young bartender hopped hopefully on to a flight to Amsterdam. She was excited at the prospect of being reunited with the man who had swept her off her feet the month before.

Stevenson traveled 40 miles from her home town to Manchester in order to board a plane to Amsterdam. This is the capital city of her new love interest’s native country, the Netherlands. She had been messaging with 21-year-old student Jesse Mateman up until the flight’s departure time. Stevenson most likely boarded the plane with visions playing in her head of romantic walks along Amsterdam’s famous canals. Her excitement must have been building with each minute of the flight that passed. So, by the time Stevenson touched down in the Netherlands, she couldn’t wait to get back in contact with Mateman.

But there was no message or call from the Dutchman when she landed. She later claimed that hours passed by with nothing to be heard from Mateman. And Stevenson says that when she did hear from the student with whom she shared so much affection, she wished he hadn’t bothered. All of her romantic fantasies were shot down in flames. She said that Mateman’s cruel response made her realize that she was not a woman in love, but a victim of a heartless prank. What’s more, Stevenson was stranded in a foreign country, some 500 miles from home.

The love story between Stevenson and Mateman did not have a conventionally romantic beginning. The young couple first crossed paths while on separate vacations in the stunning Catalonian capital of Barcelona. They had each travelled to the city with friends, but all concerned were unfortunate in their vacation schedules. They had chosen August 2017 for their visits, and were caught up in an atrocity.

“I went to Barcelona with my friend Michelle and we arrived the day before the terror attack,” Stevenson told U.K. tabloid newspaper the Daily Mail in October 2017. “On [the day of the attack], we were so lucky, we’d just nipped out to buy some drinks and food, and we were sitting on the terrace when we started hearing gunshots. When we looked over we saw people running everywhere, it was really scary.”