A few weeks ago HPR and I did back-to-back single parenting. I was in the Portland/Vancouver (WA) area for a wedding August 24-27 and HPR was in Harpers Ferry for training August 28-September 1. Our overlap covered just three of the wee hours of the 28th, and in that brief window he managed to roll over in his sleep and stick his elbow right in the middle of my back. Gah I hate when he does that.
I had a fantastic time at the wedding. I was the "best woman." The bride, my best friend from college, asked me to wear my own cornflower blue wedding dress as I stood up for her. What a friend! [photo at right: Mari (one of the bride's sisters), me, and Jordi, the bride.] During the reception I made the comment "I feel like I'm at my own wedding--I'm talking to everyone, I haven't eaten anything, and my smile muscles hurt!" Some other things:
Mimosas at the hair salon on the morning of the wedding are a GREAT idea.
The bride was lovely and effervescent, as usual. Oh, I love her.
Bonus! I got to stay with my brother, who lives west of Portland. We didn't have much down time together, but it was great nonetheless. Oh, I love him. [photo at left: bride and my brother!]
How shallow was I when, weeks before the wedding, I asked about the height of the best man? When Jord said "he's in a wheelchair," I said "Oh good, then I can wear heels." Ah yes, the world revolves around the convenience of my fashion choices.
The best man was really fun. Unless presented with someone for whom the words don't apply, one doesn't realize how much we use the directives, "walk," "stand," etc. During the rehearsal, he would either go with the intended meaning w/o comment or make a joke about it. Which isn't to say people in wheelchairs are obligated to make those around them feel comfortable, just that I thought that he and the pastor (bride's father), the bride's mother, who was sort of a stage manager for the event, and everyone else achieved a great balance of warm good feeling.
With 9/8 of the guest list deriving from German and/or Scandinavian ancestry (hi! That's me!) why did I not set the red-eye option on my camera? Sheesh. [Photo below is the "fearsome foursome" of college days: Steph, me, Jord, and Elizabeth.]
The guest list was huge. The bride is a teacher at a middle school, so that's where they held the wedding. The ceremony was as lively as you would imagine from a woman who has traveled the world and has a background in music, drama, and theology.
During a hymn, the fire alarm went off. We chuckled nervously but kept singing. By the end of the song, the alarm was off and a rather sheepish looking family escorted their youngster back into the auditorium.
Other details about the trip:
- If you like to arrive a day before your checked suitcase (both ways), then American is the airline for you!
- My rental car was upgraded one level from economy, so I got a Malibu with a sun roof. My brother and I named her Stacee. (Was that the spelling we agreed on, Steve?) Stacee had Nevada plates, so we made up a story of her upbringing in Vegas with a downtrodden single mother. . . . We can thank 3 hours of jet lag on top of my typical toddler-induced sleep deprivation for this diversion.
- If you're coming from Philadelphia, you will find Portland/Vancouver to be very very white. I noticed this most acutely when I did a double-take in downtown Vancouver: Even the homeless guy collecting cans was white.
- Shmoo and Dada did just fine without me, as I expected. I had gone on a 2-day business trip in July, so that had been our test run. My only wish was that my trip had been after rather than before HPR's--because their bonding was undone by his time away. (The first morning I was back, Shmoo awakened and called out "Dada, up-a." The second morning it was "DadaMama," and the third morning it was back to his usual "Mama up-a.")
Many many happy years to come, Jordi and Chad!