Pt 1 - Getting There, click here.
Pt 2 - Wear Costumes, click here.
|Mother and Daughter|
It's quiet at my son's house when I first wake up early wedding day morning to go to the bathroom down the hall. Except when the honey-colored dog decides to bark vociferously. "Be quiet, Honey, you'll wake everyone up." She hadn't made a peep to me the previous morning.
I remember little very clearly from this morning. I'm just watching the ebb and flow around me while I'm waiting for someone to give me directions. If I were a good grandma, I might be attacking the chaos in the kitchen, but I wouldn't have a clue where to start. The groom and groomsmen are shuttling around passing things out. Shoes. They'll all have the same shoes. Things the groom is not allowed to see. He asks when something under cover passes by, then lets them keep their secrets.
There is one large tray, loosely covered with paper, carried into the room. Someone asks what. "Bears," is the answer. Another person laughs. "Koala bears. Little tiny koala bears." "Well, koala bears are bears." More laughter. I'll be on the the lookout for tiny bears later. How do they fit into the Unicorn, Rainbows and Ninja Cats theme?
Granddaughter and her friends head out to the Strawberry Festival not far away to get strawberries and check whether the Groom's ring is ready yet at the shop. (Running a little tight on that one, are we?) They've been checking every day. They ask me if I want to go.
I decline. I remember driving through it the day before, past parking signs for $10 and $15. That or walk. I'm not up for a long walk, or even a short one.
They're back, more quickly than I expected. Like I said, things are a blur. I think there is no ring and someone is tasked with finding a suitable substitute.
"The bride's ring is ready." I hope? I'm assured by my son.
Somewhere along the way I ask when "we," in our varied cars and locales, should be at the wedding venue. Text messages go out to concerned drivers so that all riders can be given notice.
Things are in motion.
The wedding venue is the Madonna Inn in San Luis Obispo. Although it's technically a motel, it has put a unique stamp on history on California's Central Coast. I haven't been here before, even with my California roots. Our event is being held at its Expo Center, where we're greeted by the Unicorn and Ninja cat. I learn way after the fact that the Bride and Groom have engineered this "Beericorn" to dispense beer and hard cider from barrels within, through a couple of orifices in the beast. I'd glimpsed it at the Rehearsal Dinner last night but never got my camera back to the room with the bar.
Our family and its associates scurry around, getting the right front row cleared to accommodate the Groom's Party. I am advised to go wait in the back row for Grandson, who in his role as Best Man will escort me down to the aisle seat front row. I am so clueless about wedding protocol. Nothing could have been smaller than my two weddings!
Some waiting ensues and an announcement is made that there is a slight delay in the arrival of the bridal party. It wasn't too long. The orchestra repeated its program for us. The Bride has recently taken up the cello and I wonder whether this is her group.
(I'm forbidden to take crowd photos as I'm escorted down the aisle to my seat, but I resume when the Rainbow of Bridesmaids lines up Stage Right.) The significance of the green tutu for the puppy yesterday becomes clear now. I have my eye out for koala bears.
The groomsmen line up Stage Left in their rainbow shirts.
The little flower girl has been towed down the aisle in her rainbow wagon and lets out a wail as Daddy, I presume, lifts her into a chair and starts to depart.
Here comes the Bride, on the arm of her Mama. That's their handclasp at the top of this blog.
We get the full glory of the Rainbow in her train. Her Sister, the Maid of Honor, stands at our left. The Officiant is, to my surprise, Granddaughter's BF. That's Grandson, Best Man, to the right of Son.
Here is the Sweetest Part of All, where my son sings to his bride. I don't think it's just Mama's pride that he sounds wonderful.
The Best Man makes a speech to his Dad. I wish I had a recording of that.
We hear a bit of commotion to the back of the room, the buzz of the audience, then an even more persistent buzz, a mechanical buzz, and the Ring Bearer, in aviator helmet and goggles, comes piloting his drone down the aisle to deliver the rings. (You do see a look of utter surprise on Bride's face and the look of assessment on how to grab the ring packets on the Groom's.)
The ring packet successfully delivered, the pilot prances off to our right, led by his drone.
The vows and rings are exchanged, the knot is tied. Applause.
The Unicorn cake is unveiled on the cake table, as are five additional wedding cakes made by Granddaughter.
Beer and hard cider flow from the Beericorn, after technical difficulties in establishing a flow are overcome.
The DJ who will wrangle the music during dinner sets up his mammoth array of music-playing equipment.
Daughter's Youngest Daughter and her BF make googly-eyes in front of the stage.
Daughter's Eldest Daughter (in Unicorn onesie) and BF (in Kangaroo onesie with a joey in its pouch) ...
|The First Dance|
The Unicorn cake is cut. I miss the Groom decapitating it (just as well, I might have cried) and Skittles cascaded down from the head. The Bride hands the Unicorn's horn to a thrilled guest.
A rapprochement between Bride and Flower Girl ...
The Wedding Night's dancing begins. We're a little more sedate tonight after last night's long evening.
Sister and Brother-in-Law behind Granddaughter ...
The members of my son's bands who played at the Rehearsal Dinner are among the wedding guests tonight. They've hired another local band to play for us. They're a good band, with some nice vocals.
I've declined dancing these two nights, as much as I've wanted to dance, to avoid the spectacle of a face-plant by Granny on the dance floor. But my son is strong enough to catch me if I fall, so I get to have this one dance with him. Can you tell I'm smiling, inside and out?
Sister dances with the Kangaroo ...
... who shows off the joey. We're all getting ready to say good-bye to the party. The Groom invites us all to breakfast tomorrow at the Inn.
* * * * *
I've looked closely at all the photos for koala bears. I've magnified the bride's bouquet to inspect the flower fluffs. As close as I can tell, they are little fluffy unicorns. I think back at the giggles when they told us "koala bears." I think we've been victims of misdirection. Why am I not surprised?
And so the Big Events moves toward its close.