What a wonderful day it was for an outdoor wedding: warm, but not terribly so. The early May sun peeked out occasionally. A pleasant breeze from the north rustled in the surrounding shrubs, cooling the guests and family members as they took their seats on either side of the walk leading to the gazebo. Sweet strains of classical music drifted through the crowd. I couldn't believe it; my best friend Angie and her fiancÃÂ©, Mike, were finally getting married. What a memorable wedding it was.
The playground off to my right was empty, although a few children standing around the rows of chairs eyed it with a desire to play. Obviously, they would much rather be jumping and climbing, instead of being fussed over by their mothers and aunts, having their ties and hair bows adjusted. Balloons and streamers fluttered around the railing and banisters, a festive mixture of pink, light blue, and white.
To the left of me were rows of cars glittering in the sun. A stretched Lincoln stood alone, decked out in ribbons and twisted coils of streamers, ready to whisk the groom and bride away. 'Just Married' was painted across the dark rear window. As I sat there, I thought to myself how perfect and lovely everything was. The smell of fresh cut flowers filled the air.
The music stopped, and all heads turned to face the far end of the walk. The opening to the bridal chorus started to play. Down the isle she came. I could not believe how beautiful Angie was. She wore a strapless wedding gown with embroidery on her bodice. Rhinestones and pearl beads were sewn on her gown. She also wore a two-tier veil, with a matching crystal head-piece. She held a French rose silk bouquet. Her dad held her left arm and smiled at her as they reached the bottom step. There awaiting her was the pastor and her husband-to-be. Mike was stunning. He wore a black, single-breasted, satin tuxedo with a white-wing collar shirt.
The music faded, and the clergyman stepped up to the microphone, Bible in hand. He smiled at the assembly. "Cherished family members and honored guests, I would like to thank each of you for coming out this morning," he said. The sound carried well from the small speakers to either side of the podium. The pastor placed the Bible down before him. "Let us begin by offering thanks to the Lord on this wonderful day." We all bowed our heads and he prayed.
After the prayer was over, the preacher led them through their vows. It was now time for the exchange of rings. An adorable little boy dressed in a blue tuxedo walked up and handed Mike a ring. He slipped it on Angie's finger. The pastor smiled and turned to Angie. He repeated the question and received the same reply. I watched her take his ring from a small girl dressed in pink and place it on his finger. "By the power vested unto me I now proclaim you husband and wife." "You may now kiss your bride." He did so, placing his hands on her shoulders. The pastor held up his hands, bringing the crowd to their feet.
Mike and Angie left the gazebo, arms linked, with identical smiles on their faces. The best man, maid of honor, and the groomsmen and bridesmaids followed suit, falling in behind them. They stopped near the end of the walk, forming the start of the receiving line. The family and guests filed down, pausing for hugs and kisses and congratulating the young couple. Angie then turned around and threw her bouquet of rose silk flowers behind her. The women collided with each other as they tried to catch it. Then Mike and Angie ran to the Lincoln that waited for them. Both of their faces were blushed. They were so quick to get away. Mike tried not to step on Angie's long white train that dragged the ground as they ran. As they reached the decorated Lincoln, Mike jumped in the driver's seat and Angie in the passenger's seat. Mike took off as if he was in the Indy 500, ready to win a race. The ribbons and twisted coils and streamers whisked in the wind behind them. The wedding had turned out delightful.