Friday, June 14, 2013

The Wedding

The long version of the wedding story:

As some of you may remember, this wedding was planned to be absolutely underwhelming. The original idea was just to sign the papers - but, as weddings often do, sentimentality was stirred in several hearts and before we knew it, our guest list had grown a bit. A's parents drove up with his sister and her boyfriend, my dad flew from Hawaii, our friends, the newly-wed French and American showed up for moral support, and good-ole Jonas, who'll you'll remember from the Turbulent Harry Saga, showed up with tears in his eyes and pleased as punch that he'd been there on the night that A and I had met. 

It was a little nerve racking because we had no idea what to expect. We'd never gotten a briefing on where to stand, what to say, etc. The parents got dressed in their hotel, A and I put on our suit and dress together in our apartment, (his mom also bought me a GORGEOUS bouquet of white and green carnations and pink roses,) and we all wandered over to the city hall. (The Palais de Duc, here in Dijon.) We followed signs to the "marriage waiting room." I had heard rumors that in France, instead of saying "I do," you say, "oui, je le veux." I wasn't sure about this though and I was getting nervous for the moment when I'd be asked. 

There was obviously a big marriage ahead of us as we could hear them clapping and cheering, and it took them a while to file out of the room. Eventually we were called in, the family were seated, and A and I stood before the mairie, where we were read a long missive about the laws of matrimony in France. It got a little tedious, though my heart was racing and I was clutching my bouquet with nervous white knuckles. Finally I was being addressed and I knew I was supposed to say something. I sort of mumbled, "oui.." and then tentatively  "j-je le veux." "We can't hear you!" The mairie insisted. "OUI!" I shouted then, more or less terrified. Before I knew it A had done the same, we'd kissed, cheered, and then were busy signing the papers. I tried to invent a new, more elegant signature for the moment, but mostly defiled our marriage document with a scribble. 

Then we exited out the back where our friends threw rice at us and the heavens threw.. hail at us. -But no problem, honestly, I was surprisingly overcome with joy. So was everybody, seemingly, and we laughed and kissed and smiled and took a whole bunch of photos and, before we had realized it was happening, our "fake," "no frills" marriage had become the real thing.  

We drank champagne back in our apartment and went out for dinner in the evening. It felt amazing to finally have gotten over the hump and passed from girlfriend to wife. I thought it would feel old and strange, I thought it would feel old and strange all the way up to the moment I was standing in the city hall clutching my bouquet, but as soon the words were said and the deed was done, there was only elation, and a whole lot of gratitude.  

and that, ladies and gentlemen, is the first time my face has ever appeared on IFFTP

Monday, June 3, 2013

May 25th 2013, I Got Married.

Well, on May 25th I got married. I'm deeply in love, happy, and all around moved by the occasion, but I do feel a bit like I'm standing in front of a dark window trying to see out. The skepticism about love and relationships I've cultivated all my life in order to be a practical and realistic adult some day, (an absurd notion, I know) has me trained to feel that a marriage between two people so young is bound to.. deflate. I sort of doubt my husband and I know each other half as well as we've even come to know ourselves, which is probably not at all. Are we even people yet in our twenties? There's no question we both have a lot of growing to do, and it seems reasonable that we will outgrow one another. 

I think a lot of people expect their wedding to be one of the "happiest days of their life" and plan on it to such an extant that all the expectation washes over the love and sincerity of the occasion and all they get are a bunch of plates covered in cake crumbs and scads of posed photographs. (Not to mention a huge wedding tab.) It's interesting: A and I had such little expectation, and such a small ceremony, I think both of us were surprised by how happy we were. Several times since then I've thought it was one of the happiest days of my life. Who knew?

Here in France they say, "marriage pleveuse, marriage heureuse." A rainy marriage is a happy marriage. Well, on the day we got hitched, it rained, hailed, thundered, and blue sky and perfect sunshine appeared sporadically throughout. It was bizarre. Does anyone know the appropriate proverb? As everyone keeps telling me- everybody goes into this sort of thing the same way: knowing nothing, but hoping for the best. In other words, while we have a lot of growing to do, I may as well count on us growing into our relationship, rather than us growing out of it. 


..and, yes, before anyone blows a gasket, there will be photos and details to follow
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