We went to a wedding last night, a sweet little ceremony held as the shadows were growing long on the back patio of the golf shop. It was a fitting place since the groom was working there and the bride was a member when they met.
They've both had their trips down the aisle before so they chose a simple civil proceeding and it couldn't have been a better fit. Pat's son gave her away and both Pat's and Charles's daughters stood at their respective sides during the ceremony. Our friends Hiram (Charles's brother) and Bonnie were the best man and maid of honor, and Mrs. Cook (Hiram and Charles's mother) was among those flanking the bride and groom. In short, it was very much a family ceremony the rest of us were privileged to watch.
And I loved the words and symbolism the man officiating at the rites invoked. He had asked the couple to hold each other's hands right before the photo above was taken and he proceeded to go through what those hands meant to each of them. He told Pat the hands she was holding were strong to protect her but gentle enough to wipe away her tears and other characteristics one would associate with a man's role in a marriage. And he told Charles the hands he held would create a loving home and while small, would give him strength when he needed it. Best of all, he told each of them they were holding the hands of their best friend. I can't think of a better message to share at the start of a message, especially when it comes later in life.
And after they shared their first kiss as man and wife, each of them made their way around the crowd, giving hugs and accepting congratulations. Forget that stuffy receiving line; this was warm and personal. And there aren't many weddings you can attend in your golf cart either.
So we danced and drank and closed the party down. Well...OK...we enjoyed the dancing from the sideline, I had one glass of wine, and the evening came to a close at 9pm but we were there to the end, enjoying conversation with friends and basking in the glow of two people who seem incredibly happy to have found one another. Ain't love grand!