Another Dreamy Family Wedding
I have often heard that one of the consolation for single people who desperately want to get married1 is that most hot couples that get married usually get fat.2 Blame it on unconditional love, comfort, or perhaps the craziness of family life: Chins multiply, waist sizes expand, and muscles start to sag. But NOT this couple. Not this time. They look good, as they should, especially on their wedding day.
On the first Saturday of November, I traveled3 to Southern California to attend another family wedding. My cousin Joy who has legally tied the knot years ago with her man Jun and have two adorable daughters was getting her dream church wedding, and all the fantasy that comes with it. I started the enchanting wedding day travel with breakfast at Sacramento International’s Esquire Grill. I ordered a full breakfast and of course, bubbly – to usher beauty and grace to the day, already.
I landed at Los Angeles International and made it to my sister’s place with just enough time to re-steam4 my suit and get ready for the wedding. I got ready as my sister was still working on one of the biggest wedding bouquets I have ever seen. Rumor has it that the Guinness Book of World Records contacted my sister to give the bouquet the award for the largest wedding bouquet in North America. LA County Central Post Office also rang that morning to designate the bouquet its very own zip code. Additionally and erroneously, the bouquet was identified as my plus 1, when Ryan Gosling’s RSVP card went missing. Shall I continue?5
It was a complete fairy tale wedding – the groom was handsome and seemed at ease in his tux6; the chapel was royal wedding glorious; and the bride, in her enchanting Vera Wang princess wedding gown from a kingdom far far away, was without a doubt, the most beautiful woman that day.
Thank God for the bride’s beauty: It made us overlook her sparkling wine-inspired three hour7 speech. My cousin Joy often starts her speeches with, “I didn’t really have time to prepare anything…” or words to that effect. She speaks with the beautiful dictation of what comes naturally and most sincerely from the heart; and I love that, especially in contrast with speeches that string together one cliche after another or quote lines from Ed Sheeran’s songs.8
Thank God for the bride’s beauty: It made us tune away from the brawl that almost happened. Emphasis on ALMOST. Ok, maybe not a brawl, but a little heated exchange of words and looks from men who have had a little more of the open bar than others, and needed to demonstrate the machismo that also permeates Filipino culture. But to again clarify, it was an almost-brawl. It didn’t happen. Although if it did, it may have added a layer of authenticity to the reception’s Great Gatsby theme.
Given a choice, however, I probably would have selected to watch an actual brawl over the groomsmen’s cringe-worthy Backstreet Boys performance. It was another testament to the age-old Mexican saying: Just because tequila says you could doesn’t mean you should. It was one of those uncomfortable, yet almost essentially memorable wedding moments.
Again, we thank God for the bride’s beauty and elegance for distracting us.
When Jamie, the bride’s four year old daughter performed a song with no ounce of stage fright whatsoever, all needs for distraction disappeared, and all we were left with was a communal need to be in pure admiration and pride for this little glimmer of talent for the next generation.
It was another dreamy wedding event, and I was delighted that the attendees respectfully followed the dress code.9 I don’t think I saw anyone dressed inappropriately; thus there was no need to play Fashion Police. The wedding party looked great, and so did the guests. I particularly loved my Ninang Nita’s10 beautifully vibrant dress. It was symbolic of her elegant and dignified rise above the previous11 brutality of the beastly ghosts of betrayal.
I was impressed that the bride almost single handedly orchestrated the wedding in such a short period of time. She demonstrated that when you are committed to a vision and you have the means to make it happen, then by all means, make it happen. On most occasions, too, a longer preparation time could be counter-productive, as for some people, a longer period of time could lead to decision paralysis and for a wedding, decision stagnation could have fatal and costly results.
My beautiful little niece was one of the flower girls and joined her angelic cousins in the wedding party. I momentarily missed having a part in the wedding, as I loved helping in such way but I enjoyed the thought of just being a guest independent of any role for this wedding… until about twenty minutes before the ceremony, when I heard the Officiant, a Catholic Deacon call my name. After finding me, he says, “You know you will read the Responsorial Psalm, right?” I quipped, “I do now.” I thought of singing the Psalm or reading it in a more dramatic way, but I chose to just be audible and articulate. There was no need for me to ruin a beautiful wedding ceremony.
My sister was again, the Master of Ceremonies, and it was perhaps among her best performance as a wedding party host; and appropriately so: She and the bride have been longtime besties – since we were kids.
As with every wedding, there is always that moment that brings me to tears. This time, it wasn’t when the bride, like a glorious goddess coming from the light, entered the chapel; but it was when, mid-way to the altar, her mother and grandmother, the bride’s two pillars of strength and love, joined her and escorted her to the altar where the Holy Sacrament and her husband-to-be awaits.
This wedding completes the series of dreamy weddings among Joy’s siblings. My sisters and I are blessed to have been a part of each and everyone of them – all in beautiful churches and all very special in their own unique way.
There is a multitude of reasons why weddings remain to be my favorite event: They bring family together; they transform the symbolism of religious and social iconography into tangible manifestations that may or may not make sense; they provide a perfect opportunity to celebrate life and love; and on most occasions, wine flows along with beauty and fantasy. Cheers to more years of devotion for the newly weds and their children.
- Not me; unless I meet someone hot and Billionaire rich.
- Yes, that sounds mean, but it’s the usual truth and I’m pretty sure most of you believe the same way and are just unwilling to admit.
- With about a two weeks’ notice
- My sister Leah had already taken my suit to the cleaners, but as on most occasions, there were still annoying creases and wrinkles I wanted to get remove.
- The bouquet, as you can tell, inspired so many jokes as we rushed late to the wedding location.
- It was one of the rare occasions that I have seen the groom formally attired, and he cleans-up very well.
- Or even worse: Groomsmen speeches that simply boast of the specifications of their flat screen TVs and other recent Best Buy purchases.
- I personally get offended when attendees misinterpret and more so, disregard an identified dress code, especially for a wedding. I mean, especially for a wedding. Unless the couple is getting married on a fishery, a muddy rice field, or a third world country marketplace, it is unacceptable to be overly casual. I believe all weddings ought to be treated as a formal event BECAUSE THEY ARE; and therefore FORMAL ATTIRE IS A MUST.
- The bride’s mother.
- And perhaps still lingering