9/3 (Sunday), 10:30 — Arrival at Urban Retreat (http://www.urbanretreat.com) for makeup. I behave myself and do not go mad buying Kiehl’s products for 50% off retail.
10:35 — After hanging up my dress, Dana starts on my face. She does my eyes to match the dress (http://www.watters.com/images/products/fullview/1432.jpg in periwinkle) and finds that none of her lipstick works with my eye makeup. I didn’t bring anything that would work with lavender eye shadow because, well, what in the world could work, so she puts on some nude gloss and we cross our fingers. I admire Cathern’s perfectly smooth flat-ironed bob and wished that I had hair that behaved itself.
11:00 — I hang out with Rozi as her hair is put up, then taken down and then put up again with some stephanotis. The stylist Shannon is upbeat and cracks jokes with us. I drink a gigantic iced coffee, get cash, and gossip with Jacinda on the phone.
12:00 — Shannon pulls my hair off my face, curling it so it looks like a waterfall. At certain angles, it makes me think of a bridal mullet, but I still like it. Miriam and I take pictures of Rozi, Elaine, Rozi and Elaine, Shannon, Shannon and Rozi, Elaine and the almost mute girl with implants who does her hair.
1:30 — We drive back to the hotel to dress. Dawn is running around doing coordinator stuff, so I struggle into my toe-less hose, put on my dress, and realize that I should have tried to lose 10 pounds. Dammit.
2:30 — I make my way to Cathern’s room, where she zips me up, and we go over our toasts. Cathern’s friend Steve watches the US Open while we touch up makeup, fiddle with our hair, and snack on fries.
2:45 — We go to Rozi’s room for a little quiet time. Andrew, handsome in a suit and Brooks Brothers tie, nearly cries when he sees us in the corridor.
2:46 — I nearly burst into tears when Rozi lets us into her suite. She looks gorgeous.
3:00 — We make it down to the Frost Room for formal pictures, stopping in the Quinn Room to get our flowers (the bridesmaids’ bouquets are pink sweetheart roses with blueberries), and pop in breath mints. Pictures of everyone in every single configuration we can conjure are taken: Rozi and Andrew with parents, bridesmaids, groomsmen, each other, Grandma Charlotte, and Aunt Rita and Uncle I still can’t remember his name. One of the photographers hands me some MAC blot powder to take care of the oil slick on my forehead, and I concentrate on looking thinner.
4:30ish — Andrew and Rozi meet with the judge to sign the ketubah. By this point, it’s raining pretty steadily so Andrew and Rozi nix the original plan to take post-ceremony pictures by the Mississippi River. The photographer suggests they hop in somebody’s car after the ceremony is over to catch their breaths and be alone before the reception.
4:55 — We line up, wait for the music to start for the walk down the aisle. As we walk along, I catch up to Andrew, who looks at me and says “Did you know that next month we’ll have known each other for ten years?” I nearly cry right then and there.
5:00 — Procession starts. Ceremony begins. My sandals almost fall off my feet, but they don’t. The space where the ceremony is held is a corridor in the depot, between the ballroom where the reception is to take place and the indoor ice rink. We all stand on a stage, facing out towards the guests. I don’t have anything to do during the ceremony except not fall over and try not to sob hysterically during the readings. But when I heard Rozi choke up a bit reading one of Pablo Neruda’s sonnets, my eyes watered and then it was all over by the time Andrew read the following:
The little prince went away, to look again at the roses.
And the roses were very much embarrassed.
“You are not at all like my rose,” he said. “As yet you are nothing. No one has tamed you, and you have tamed no one. You are like my fox when I first knew him. He was only a fox like a hundred thousand other foxes. But I have made him my friend, and now he is unique in all the world.”
“You are beautiful, but you are empty,” he went on. “One could not die for you. To be sure, an ordinary passerby would think that my rose looked just like you–the rose that belongs to me. But in herself alone she is more important than all the hundreds of you other roses: because it is she that I have watered; because it is she that I have put under the glass globe; because it is she that I have sheltered behind the screen; because it is for her that I have killed the caterpillars (except the two or three that we saved to become butterflies); because it is she that I have listened to, when she grumbled, or boasted, or ever sometimes when she said nothing. Because she is my rose.”
I swear to Jebus, my eyes are tearing up as I write this, and the wedding was almost two weeks ago. So of course at the wedding, I was nearly inconsolable. Everything was gorgeous, and all I could do was cry. Rings were exchanged, shawls were draped around them in the Ismaili tradition, and they kissed. And as Ben walked me down the aisle, I was completely overwhelmed. A summer of my best friends’ weddings and I was completely undone. Jacinda felt the same way. Later in the evening, after dinner but before dessert in a room full of pink roses and candlelight, after Rozi and Andrew had their first dance (an Elvis impersonator singing “I Can’t Help Falling in Love with You”), Jacinda and I smoked in the hotel bar and cried a little bit.
Because Rozi looked magnificent. Because Andrew’s speech was hilarious. Because my speech was excellent. Because there were no viable single boys for me to smooch. Because the cake was delicious. Because Rozi’s mother and aunts could not stop laughing. Because we wanted to write Rozi a thank you note for loving Andrew enough to marry his crazy (but in a good way) ass. Because Kevin danced the savoy. Because the Elvis impersonator jumped on stage with the band and kicked serious ass. Because I really loved my bridesmaid dress. Because if I ever got married I would want it to be exactly like that night.
9/6 (Monday): After brunch at the hotel, we piled back into the rental car and drove home to Chicago. Stopping, of course, in the Dells to visit Culver’s for custard and burgers. My bouquet tucked safely in beside me, I listened to music, checked e-mail from my cell phone, and started making plans for Nick and Nadine’s engagement party this winter. Kevin and I ended up having dinner at Joe and Jacinda’s, sitting around the living room while the dogs made eyes with us, silently begging for scraps.
So, what did you lot do for Labor Day weekend? Is it getting colder where you are? Are you still wearing white even though white after Labor Day weekend is a no-no? Did you, like me, go crazy redecorating your bathroom? Did you go out earlier this week and consume a large Indian dinner? Tell me tell me tell me.
“Nice girls don’t let men kiss them until after they’re engaged. Men don’t want the bloom rubbed off.” “Personally, I think I have too much bloom. Maybe that’s the trouble with me.”
De La Soul – I Can’t Call It; Don Covay – Overtime Man; Wayne McGhie and the Sounds of Joy – Dirty Funk