Gentle Reader, last weekend I was privileged to wed one of my best friends, Miss Spectacular. To her beau, Bernie. Obviously I didn’t get married to a lady; whatever would they say in the gossip columns? I merely performed the ceremony, signed the paperwork, helped them get hitched.
As with any wedding, a number of disasters befell us. The mother of the bride, a professional caterer, was to handle the, um, catering – despite the fact that it was finals week for her. Fate and her body intervened, when she had to be rushed to hospital – her gallbladder was very cross that she’d over-extended herself. Naturally, the bridesmaids* swooped in, cancelling the bachelorette party to come cook for the wedding instead, and we were happy to do it.
We cooked what amounted to four turkeys and exactly one thousand side dishes, and I learned a new word from Miss Greenfield – “Hangry” – a portmanteau of hungry and angry. I learned it, because that’s what we all were after cooking food all day and not eating any.
The day of the rehearsal dinner, we convened at Bernie’s sister’s place, where the wedding was to be held. Though there was some confusion with the choreography – which is exactly the reason rehearsal dinners exist – we managed to get things down to a science, and settled in to meet all the other people involved in this production.
We dispersed, and I went to stay at Mr. Darling’s for the night, so that he could fix my hair for the big day.
After Miss Greenfield picked Darling and I up, we had to stop for some last minute supplies – we were also running a little late. We arrived at the venue precisely in time to round up the Bride and her other attendants and head to the house across the lake that they’d rented to get ready in, and to spend their first married night in, later. We spent a number of hours getting ready – there was a veritable ocean of champagne, from good old Möet et Chandon to some delightful nonsense that came in pink cans with attached straws – and pampering the bride and ourselves. It was one of the least stressful bridal parties I’ve ever seen – and I’ve seen a good number of them.
Mr. Darling, Miss Taylor, and I left about forty-five minutes before showtime, leaving Ms. Capere, Miss Greenfield, and Miss Spectacular to tend to the finishing touches. The groom was due to arrive any second to adorn himself, and everything was surely going smoothly.
When we got back to the venue, everything was in chaos – as is normal, before a wedding – but Bernie, the groom, was personally attending to each little problem, putting out fires left and right all by himself. I was furious – not at him, of course, but because no one had stepped up to handle these things. Whether there’s a wedding planner or not, somebody ought to keep the bulk of the pressure of the details off of the happy couple. Certainly you ask them for their opinion on crucial things, but someone needs to be handling things like “Which are the boutonnieres and which are the corsages?” and “The DJ is running late. What should we do?” and “Where should we put the cake? The homeowner doesn’t want people inside but it’s raining!” and so on. Oh, had I mentioned it was raining? It had been pouring down furiously since five a.m. I helped Bernie sort out the flower crisis and told him he had to get across the lake; it was four-thirty, and the wedding was to due to begin at five.
I also told him confidentially that no wedding in history ever started on time, and shooed him towards his car. I think we’ll leave you here, Gentle Reader. After all, what could possibly go wrong?
Plenty. Plenty could go wrong. Tune in Friday to find out precisely what!
* Strictly speaking, as Officiant, I was not a bridesmaid. But I spent all my time with them, have known them for years, and certainly was more at home/more at ease amongst them. Also? My shirt matched their dresses. I’m totally including myself as a bridesmaid for purposes of this entry.