Friday morning was pretty bad. Lee had some sort of weird illness and couldn’t stand up for any length of time without getting dizzy. He couldn’t eat anything and just dozed miserably. It was the first day of my period which I find getting more and more instense as I approach thirty so I was sore and grumpy. It began to look like Lee wouldn’t make it to Giffy’s wedding which would be pretty awful, and I was worried about finding the place on my own.
However, at one o’clock, just an hour before we should really think about leaving Lee got up, and walked around and said he thought he was alright. He ate two ham and cheese toasted sandwiches and said he could make it out. I was feeling so crappy I didn’t bother with make-up, nail polish or alternate shoes for the reception. I just relied on the prettiness of my sister’s wedding bridesmaid dress and my bridal shoes, which worked out alright. Damn, I wish I’d drought my brocade jandles though. I really wish I had, stupid wedding shoes are hurty.
Giffy’s wedding took place at the Buddhist temple in Stokes Valley. It was a blend of Thai, Catholic, buddhist and Maori traditions and perfectly reflected the personalities of both Erik and Giffy.
The ceremony started with three challenges to Erik, with the first gate he has to pass through made of up friends. Giffy asked me to be one of the people to challenge Erik verbally at this gate along with Zephfi and Tash.
I was the first person to speak at the first gate of challenge to Erik. I said “We are here to protect Giffy, and to ensure that you care for her. Why should we let you through?” and he said something about how he loves and respects Giffy and it was lovely.
Then Zephfi said “do you promise to always respect, challenge, encourage and
support her?” and he said that he did.
Then Tash said “and do you promise to keep her smiling and love her forever?” and he said he would and we took the (gold) chain out of his way and he gave us money (I got $8!) and then he went to the extended family gate.
At the final gate the kids thing was all Erik, Giffy’s mum said something like “what are your intentions with my daughter?” and Erik said that he’d love her and keep her well and so on, and then he said “Oh yeah, and we’ll have kids. Lots of kids! Maybe nine!” and he got a big laugh for saying what she wanted to hear.
Some of the other questions at the last gate (the close family) were “what will you do if she gets sick?” from an uncle and “Will you take care of Giffy?” from one of the tux wearing tiny boys. Tux wearing tiny boys are awesome, and the one with the mohawk is totally my new hero.
Inside the temple courtyard the Catholic wedding ceremony took place, with Giffy looking so very happy and so very bridey (“the Bridiest Bride in Bridetown” I think was her description…) but really, she just couldn’t stop grinning. It was very lovely. Plus, when the wind made her veil go vertical it was pretty cool.
After that ceremony there was a buddhist wedding ceremony inside the temple. Man, my legs got numb sitting there, but it was still very lovely. I liked the idea of everyone present being joined with string, even if there was a bit of a tug of war with the last bit of the string so that it started to break in front of me and Zephfi! We grabbed hold of it and it held together, so no bad omens there.
Then there was mingling and I tried to get pictures of everyone, battling the stupid batteries in my tempramental camera. I hope the big group photo comes out well, there were lots of different levels of people so hopefully everyone will be visible.
The reception was delightfully bubbly-soaked and full of wonderful friends. I caught up with lots and lots of people and got advice on how to be a lazy bum. Then I gave slightly drunken advice to Giffy and Erik via Matt’s wedding video….we’ll see how that turns out…
The ceremony preceding dinner was lovely. Giffy and Erik sat at a table and held their hands over some flowers. Everyone present was invited to pour blessed water over their hands from a conch shell. I didn’t think of anything in particular to say to them as I did it, although I wish I had, I just asked how they were holding up. There were so very many people present I theorised I could have gone round again and poured water a second time to see if Giffy noticed or not, but I didn’t.
The quilt was handed over for use in a bed-blessing ceremony and it seemed like Giffy liked it. She really liked my idea of using Canteen bandannas for the backing, and although I didn’t see Erik’s reaction I am sure he likes it too. He’d better! *shakes fist at sky*
Seriously though, I had a wonderful time and I have some very beautiful photos. Not really enough of the bride and groom though, since it was so hard to see them for any length of time. With over 200 guests I didn’t really feel I could steal very much time. I did get some lovely first dance pictures though, and I shall scrapbook some today.