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Experiencing different cultures: Regina couple marries 15 times around the world

REGINA — Karl Fix and Sandra Beug have had some interesting experiences marrying each other again and again in different countries around the world.

They found themselves covered in spit in Ethiopia.

They both caught malaria on the way to Timbuktu in Mali and Fix almost died. 

In Papua, Indonesia, this year to celebrate their upcoming 15th wedding anniversary, Fix wore a koteka — a traditional type of codpiece that leaves almost nothing to the imagination.

Beug declined the Dani tradition of the bride going topless for the ceremony, but Fix figured why not be authentic with his wardrobe. 

"I thought, 'What the hell. If you're going to do it, you're going to do it,'" Fix says.

Fix, 68, owns a construction company in Regina and Beug, 58, is a dentist originally from Raymore, Sask. They met in 2001 and married in January 2004.

Since meeting, the travel buffs have visited 116 countries together and celebrated their marriage in places such as Nepal, Suriname, Mozambique, Greenland, the Faroe Islands and Fix's home country of Germany.

Beug says the two share a common outlook on life and are both interested in history and geography. Fix says he was attracted to Beug's willingness to try new things.

"She had that spirit of adventure that most other people don't have."

Fix starts planning their wedding adventures a year in advance and Beug often doesn't know about the marriage until the day of.

Fix says they enjoy celebrating each culture's unique traditions.

"We try to dress like the local people and be part of the whole cultural experience."

In Ethiopia, locals wanted Beug to wear a goat hide topless. She declined, but the couple was spit on after the celebration — a substitute for rice or confetti in the African country.

"We got mucus all over us," Fix says.

They've had some close calls along the way.

On their most recent trip in Indonesia, Fix had a machete pulled on him.

While driving in Ivory Coast on the way to where they would eventually get married in Timbuktu, the couple encountered several checkpoints and had to bribe guards to move ahead.

They both contracted malaria on that trip. A friend found Fix in a hotel room in Heidelberg, Germany, and rushed him to hospital where he was given medication.

"You're either going to be dead by tomorrow or you're not," he recalls doctors telling him.

There are no specific plans for future weddings.

Beug hasn't seen New Zealand and Australia. Neither of them has been to South Korea or Antarctica.

Beug says all the experiences have made them closer.

"I don't think either of us could think of another person who would do the same thing."

— Follow @RyanBMcKenna on Twitter

Ryan McKenna, The Canadian Press

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