Joe's wedding was at 5 PM on Friday, August 2, at a catering place/restaraunt in Chelsea, Michigan. Bill wasn't sure he could get off work early enough to be there on time, so I got a ride there with Jenny. At the last minute before we got on the freeway we realized neither of us had cameras, so we made a quick stop at Rite Aid to pick up a disposable one.
We missed the place the first time down Territorial - I guess the directions identified it as being on the opposite side of the road from reality - but I noticed we'd passed the address and on the way back the front of the building - the side with the sign- was facing us, so it was easier to find. There were a lot of cars, and we could see some of the wedding party gathering by the reception hall while the guests gathered across the lawn; white lawn chairs were assembled facing a greek-style arch that had the front two columns decorated with flowers and strips of light blue tulle.
There seemed to be more people at the ceremony than expected - there was a slight delay while they brought out more chairs (Bill helped -he had gotten there on time, after all). It was good that there were chairs for everyone, but the new set-up made the last two rows of chairs sit in the sun. The things we'll do to witness important moments in friends lives. Emily joined us and once everyone was seated they started the procession.
There was a pretty large wedding party, with the bridesmaids in sky blue and the groomsmen in tuxedos. rather than lapels, the tuxedos had buttons down the front and the recently popular notched collar that looks almost colonial. They looked very handsome.
Aimee looked really beautiful, with her veil over her face until she was given to Joe. Since we were in the back, we couldn't hear everything about the ceremony, but Harry gave the homily in a clear, carrying voice, and it was a lovely speech, reflecting how well he knew Aimee and Joe. A couple times he referred to "these troubled times" in terms of what an optimistic and important thing it is to get married and start partnerships at these times, and I thought of Heinlein and the troubled times and figured we must be in them now.
They had a few different elements to the ceremony, one of which was the traditional breaking of a glass, signifying a step that, once taken, cannot be reversed.
They had handed out bottles of bubbles to blow and many of us did, but not that many, since the dresses looked like satin and bubbles will stain satin.
The families headed into the reception hall and the wedding party went out for some more pictures, and a bunch of us paused at the traditional "smoking break" type of moment outside. Jennifer and Raven were there, and Kari, and Bob and Jenna Dunaj, and Kris Truzzi, whom many of us knew for years as Bobo Ghod. Ken and Liz and Tom Fulton and Jen and Steve were there but off involved with pictures. This was a clan that I was only peripherally part of in my high school days, both because I hung out more with Peter Chin and crew, and because my curfew prevented my free participation in most of their activities (they were older than I). They hung out at Denny's pretty consistently while I was in Grinnell, though, so every time I came home to visit I could find them, and they became an anchor for me, people I could consistently come home to. Ken (Troll) and Joe and Deb probably more than anyone. Bob Dunaj and Joe had actually been out of touch for the past few years, and I was pleased I had put them back in touch -- as head of the Community High reunion, I received Bob and Jenna's contact info when Jenna sent it in, and I forwarded it immediately to Joe.
The reception was fun; Bill and I sat with Jenny and Emily at a table with a couple of friends of Aimee's family. The real social scene was out back smoking, so that even those of us who didn't smoke went out there from time to time. I went out to fetch Emily and Jenny when our table got called up to the buffet line. There was also an enclosed patio (with chairs!) on the other side of the reception hall, but it took a long time for the smokers to switch to that, and Jen and Steve were again hanging out back when Bill and I headed home.
My knee was hurting a lot, so I barely danced, but of course they did the traditional dances from the Rockey Horror picture show, and they did YMCA, the hustle, and a bunch of others.
Joe is a big comic book buff, so he and the groomsmen were all wearing super hero t-shirts under their tuxedos - superman, batman, green lantern, captain marvel, and the flash. A number of us were surprised that Joe chose to be Captain Marvel over Superman or Batman, but so he did.
They had a table set up with three engagement photos of Joe and Aimee, laid out with wide white borders so people could right congratulations and other comments around the borders. They had one in which Joe was strongly looking right into the camera, the kind of expressive and subtly intense look that catches your eye like his theatre promotional shot did from high school. Those light eyes... They were all nice pictures.
and that's all I have to say about that.