Monday, September 25, 2006

Skipping the Light Fandango

We waited in small clusters around picnic tables underneath the large white tent for the bride to arrive. The rain hit against the roof of the tent as a Bill Holiday mix played through the band's amplifier. The groom, also late but not as much, waited at the edge of the parquet floor that would serve both as the chapel and the dance hall. The rain kept coming.

Some things take a while.

It is the second marriage for both of them, and there wasn't a reason a rush. The small group of friends and family that had gathered in their backyard weren't going anywhere. We listened to torch songs in the rain.

It was the first time I have been to the second wedding of someone whom I went to the first. I was there the night he met his first wife at a band audition, and he woke me that night to talk on the phone of how he loved her long black hair. Soon he loved the other parts of her as well, and as we drifted to other sides of the country we would see others lives in snap shots. I watched the arc of that relationship stretch first upwards and then too long.

So here we were again underneath a tent waiting for his new bride. The moment felt almost Buddhist to be reincarnated back to the beginning point of another journey but still with a little bit of karma from the first. There was no reason to hurry.

The new bride also has long black hair, but she keeps in under a hat most of the time. She has a similar mixture of energy and intelligence as her husband, and when they dance they look brilliant together. His lumbering has been roped in and her twirling gets pushed back to his chest before being launched once again out into the music. Some of their moves are choreographed from the classes they took together; some are improvised. I don't know when they officially started dating; their relationship seeped out of a friendship. Some things take a while.

Finally the bride arrived and after walking past the pool she stopped at the edge of the damp lawn. Her husband rushed to her and he carried her in his arms across the lawn and place her down of a friend of theirs who serving as a Minster.

The rain didn't stop at exactly the end of the ceremony, but it did end perhaps after the cake shaped like a guitar had been cut or perhaps during the time the groom played a set with a few of his old band mate friends before the main rockabilly group went on stage.

I danced with bride mostly to avoid the mosquitoes who were as almost well fed as the guests. The crowd grew larger and soon the groom side and bride side gathered under the steady dowap beat on the parquet floor. We swirled and dipped to celebrate friends promising again love forever in life that we know will sometimes be choreographed and sometimes be improvised.

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