The big day!
Finally October 2, 2004 has arrived. My friends Tim and Jess' wedding day!
Jay, Karen, Nick and I arrived more or less in time for the rehearsal on friday late afternoon. As weddings here consist quite a big wedding party (bride+groom, matron of honor, best man, three bridesmaids and three groomsmen, two flower girls and a ring bearer), people practice how to walk up to the altar etc the day before the wedding. It's actually quite fun. even I had to rehearse a tiny little bit, because Tim and Jess' had asked me if I wanted to be a eucharist minister. It made me feel very honored and it was very special to be an active part in my friends' wedding!
And maybe the rehearsal is just a reason to celebrate a bit already before the big day... cause afterwards there is a rehearsal dinner. Ours was downstairs in the church, just a social and informal gathering. Unlike here we have the tradition to play games at weddings in Germany. I decided to introduce this tradition to the US (knowing how much Jess likes it) and made them go through the "Marriage Test": bride and groom sit back to back, each holding to shoes (one of the bride, one of the groom). They get asked questions they have to answer by holding up one of the shoes (like how is more lazy/stubborn/spends more money). We had lots of fun and laughter during that game! To fit them for the ups and downs of marriage Jess got an album on marriage wisdom: a lot of her friends had sent in pages with their special marriage wisdom... We spent the nights at Lake House, the beautiful home of friends of Jess' parents. Lying in front of the fireplace and talking, having breakfast the next morning watching the lake...
And then it was the BIG DAY. Uschi (from Munich) and I arrived just in time at Jess' parents to see the bride get dressed and accompany the female wedding party to the church for pictures and more pictures. Here everybody gets tons of professional pictures taken... The caremony started at 3 pm and the wedding party walked up the aisle. Jess was accompanied by her parents. She looked beautiful in her dress and the long veil! Annie and Aric sang which made the ceremony even more special. Jess and Tim then spoke their vows and gave each other the rings, lighted the unity candle and are now Mr. and Mrs. Rowen! I really enjoyed the ceremony which was moving and funny all at once!
afterwards of course there were more pictures to be taken and then we drove to the reception at the country club. Tim and Jess came in an old Morgan. We took more pictures ouside - in the cold. Inside everybody was eating Grandma Scuteri's famous mint brownies and drinking cocktails (lining them up on the table, cause they were free until 6.30 pm...). Jess and Tim were forced to kiss a lot as people kept on clinging their glasses. They always made another couple kiss as well, which was very cute when the names they took out of a bag were th names of Jess' grandparents. We had very good food and lots of fun. Then it was time to dance. It started with the anniversary dance to find out which couple had been married for the longest time. It was Jess' grandparents which have been married for 58 years! After the obligatory chicken dance I introduced another game which works like musical chairs. when the music stopps the participants have to bring something (credit card, bra, ...), the last one losses and has to do something for the bride and groom until their first anniversary. (Sounds familiar to some of you, doesn't it?) They just loved it! we went on dancing and partying and just had tons of fun!