Monday, September 19, 2005

Going to the chapel and we're gonna get married...

All I can say is...ow.

Minty has a sore throat and a slight headache so if we could all use our quiet voice today it would be greatly appreciated. Also, I was a wee bit busy so I don't have a lot of pictures.

The last 3-4 days have been a blur. R and J got engaged in December 2003. My mom had just been diagnosed with breast cancer and J was away at vet school. R came over to visit my mom after her surgery and, over dinner alone with my parents, asked for permission to propose to J. My parents of course said yes. R, like my husband D, is a quiet, nice, smart boy. A suitable boy if you will. He's an engineer at one of the country's top companies and comes from a very nice family. No, he's not Indian but in the grand scheme of things his heart is into our family every bit as much as J's is. My father's only condition was that the wedding wait until J finishes school. A few months later, on one of J's rare breaks from school, R got down on one knee and proposed on a trip to a beach house in Michigan. (As a side note, R was unaware that D proposed to me in the same manner). Yes, I would be remiss as a girl if I didn't mention how beautiful the ring is; a platinum band with a square diamond solitare the size of Jupiter's third moon. (If you ever read this J, I'm only kidding although you have to agree the diamond is big). The long engagement was not so we could put together a grand wedding, although the wedding was grand. Things were dicey with my mom's health and J still had a year and a half left at school. In all honesty J didn't even start planning the wedding until Jan 2005 when she had another break from school. Anyway, fast forward to this weekend.

Family started arriving on Wednesday and the trips to the airport to pick up more never seemed to end. J and I had a great time at the spa on Thursday. We felt completely refreshed as we drove around to get our eyebrows and nails done. Everything was going so well until J called me that night and had quite the bitchy, bridezilla tone in her voice. It's funny how J has literally repaired broken limbs on 20 pound dogs and delivered a horse in breech position with nerves of steel but when it comes to thinking about whether the string orchestra will make it to the ceremony on time, she freaks out. Long story short, I hung up on her. I KNOW! I'm the MOH! In hindsight I shouldn't have done it but I thought it was a better alternative than yelling at each other until we were blue in the face.

Friday was the rehersal. D took off a half day of work and ran around to help me get stuff done. Rehersal was fine. The priest saying the mass has known J since she was 9 and is very fond of her.

Running through the service.

The only true glitch was that the wedding coordinator J paid to run things was a half hour late and stood in the back and never said anything. This will come back to bite us later in the story. The rehersal dinner was at a wonderful Italian restaraunt called Campagnola. R's parent's rented out the top floor and dinner was spectacular.


My family cut things a little short as we had all our relatives waiting for us back at the house but I think everyone understood. D took the Girl home as it was past her bedtime and we needed her to be in good shape for the long day ahead. The Boy and I went to my parent's house and there were easily 50 people there. We stayed a bit, enjoying everyone's company before we went home.

Aunties gathering to sing songs.

The actual wedding day was pretty long but here are some highlights:
  • Had to be at the hotel at 5:30am for hair and makeup.
  • The dress still looked hideous on me.
  • J, who got little sleep, asked me to stop and get her a Red Bull on the way to my parent's house. She took 1 sip and nearly threw up.
  • Tension when my cousin arrived with his Latina girlfriend (who is SO nice and sweet and pretty) and his father wouldn't acknowledge her.
  • Panic attack number 1 for J was in the back of the limo on the way to the church
  • Panic attack number 2 was in the back of the church before we walked down the isle. In actuallity this wasn't as much a panic attack as it was a burst of adrenaline and just wanting to be down the isle next to R.
  • Ceremony went long by Catholic standards. R's mom is a musican so every 5 minutes there was a song accompanied by a full set of musicians and singers.
  • BIGGEST ISSUE. My family scattered and headed for the reception after the cermony. There are no family pcitures at the church with my family. My father yelled at me and I stormed off and said "That does it. I've had it with you dad!" J yelled at my dad for yelling at me. The fucking wedding coordinator was nowhere in sight.
  • First dance song was "What a Wonderful World" by Louis Armstrong.
  • Changing into the wedding sari took FOR-FREAKING-EVER. There were 9 women sent up to assist 4 of us in changing and we still missed all of lunch.
  • When we came back to the reception, my father came up to me and said "I know you're mad at me but (Malayalam term of endearment) you look beautiful". That's my dad's version of an apology and I'm old enough to know it aint gonna get any better than that. I gave him a kiss.
  • There was no way J could have gone anywhere near a metal detector with the amount of bling she was wearing.
  • I cried through my maid of honor toast. I'm sure there are some great shots of me bawling like an idiot.
  • I drove R and J to a large rose garden for some outdoor shots in her sari.
  • Headed back to the house for some traditional wedding things but not before we stopped at McDonald's. The McNuggets were definitely not the caliber of the chicken I was supposed to have at the reception but the fries were damn good.
  • Big summit while we were gone. My father took my uncle aside and told him that life is short and that his son has been dating the pretty Latina for years and regardless of whether he accepts ot or not, they were going to be togther. As the oldest, my father has clout and he pretty much told my uncle that as long as they finished school, there was no reason not to accept the relationship. I heard that my father said if my uncle doesn't accept it then my father would pay for the wedding whenever it occurred. My uncle begrudgingly complied. My cousin, a big guy who spent the last 2 years in Afghanistan and Iraq in the Marines, said it was the happiest day of his life. He almost cried on my dad's shoulder.
  • R got a hug from my mom before he and J took their first step into the house. My dad said the same thing to R that he said to D on our wedding day. "Welcome home son, my house is now your house." As soon as he said that D told me he felt a little sad. He was used to being my dad's only son up until then. But sweety, I said, you'll always be his favorite son. True, he nodded as he walked away.
  • J and R drank warmed, sweetened milk for fertility and to sweeten their marriage. J hates milk. hee hee.
  • Tons of family pictures. By now most of the people between 21 and 31 were dressed in jeans in preperation for the after-party. J and R rented out a bar in downtown Chicago for dancing since they decided to forego the DJ at the wedding. I told my cousins it didn't matter how they were dressed, the important thing is that we were all together.
  • I didn't make it to the after party as I could barely stand. Plus, poor D handled the kids all day and I'm sure he needed a break. Despite how tired he was D, still handsome in his suit, went and got me a milkshake and rubbed my feet.
  • I have great pictures from the after party but none are anonymous enough to post.
  • After-party rocked. They rented a mini-bus to take them to and from the hotel. My one cousin from England randomly saw her forner boss from Ireland at the bar. I love Chicago!
  • 90% of the group that went was completely smashed by the end of the night.

Will finish out the rest of the weekend on a seperate post. My wrists hurt.


Blogger Penny Lane says...

Wow... sounds awesome! I love weddings! And please tell me what the Malayalam word of endearment was - "mol"?

Mon Sep 19, 09:31:00 PM CDT  
Blogger D says...

fan-tas-tic mint! congratulations... it sounds really really chaotic yet fun.
waiting for the rest of the story. :( want to see pics....

Mon Sep 19, 09:44:00 PM CDT  
Blogger The Box says...

Oh, to be an Indian woman.

Oh fuck, where's the delete button?

Mon Sep 19, 09:50:00 PM CDT  
Blogger Madame Mahima says...

oh my that sounded sounded a lot like our family gatherings..lotsa shouting, lotsa lovin' and lotsa music ..oh and a bloody photographer who makes it his lifes mission to follow u everywhere.

blissssss innit?

Mon Sep 19, 11:15:00 PM CDT  
Blogger Rat says...

WOW !!!! Sounds like soo much fun. And that was such a nice detailed update. And also in true Mint style with lots of emotion. The part about your cousin and your dad and uncle brought a few tears to my eyes.

Mon Sep 19, 11:29:00 PM CDT  
Blogger Pink says...

Sounds like a lot of fun. Yeah, the malayalam term of endearmnent - mole?!

Tue Sep 20, 12:10:00 AM CDT  
Blogger Sista T says...

yeah the cousin part was really funny. Great story and sounds like a super fun wedding.

Tue Sep 20, 12:13:00 AM CDT  
Anonymous AB says...

Yeah the dad and cousin part was touching. Lots of things happening at once huh? But I bet you wouldn't complain:)

Tue Sep 20, 12:58:00 AM CDT  
Blogger Wandernut says...

How wonderful.
Pictures! Pictures :)

Tue Sep 20, 01:48:00 AM CDT  
Blogger Sujatha says...

Oh god! This was wonderful, warm, sad, funny, poignant. Lovely, lovely. yes, loved the part about the cousin. i'm looking ahead and seeing all of this happening with us about 20 years from now...

Tue Sep 20, 05:33:00 AM CDT  

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