Brides do not control the heavens.
Let's talk about outdoor weddings.
Take yesterday, for instance. I went with Jim from my band Mappamundi to do a wedding at the J. C. Raulston Arboretum.
|Assessment of said Arboretum for weddings: negative.|
It's a pity how few outdoor spaces are actually quiet any more. Weddings at Fearrington have this same problem. It's pretty there (the belted Galloways are particularly picturesque) but you might as well wed on the verge of the highway. "You'll find our wedding party on I-24 between exit 14 and exit 15 - just pull off into the breakdown lane" - at least the directions would be simple.
The weather was cold, grey, drizzly. Even in a long sleeve shirt and sweater I was cold - imagine how shivery were the bride, wearing one of those strapless wedding dresses so popular this season, and her bridesmaids, wearing thin flouncy maroon chiffon dresses with spaghetti straps (out from under several of which could be seen large, garish tattoos featuring, on one bridesmaid, bold multicolored patches floweringly blazoned CARPE on one shoulder-blade and DIEM on the other).
So everybody was late, late, late getting on site - probably hoping the weather was going to turn. So Jim and I were sitting in a light drizzle, the legs of our chairs sinking a little into the mud, playing for the few hardy souls willing to sit on damp and clammy chairs.
The huddled assemblage's few desultory conversations were punctuated by anxious looks up into the sky.
Brides, is this really what you want?
one of my first questions is:
This type of bride, see, she think's it's "her day" so if she doesn't want it to rain it won't. That reasoning doesn't always wash, so to speak.
Here are two rainy-wedding stories.
A wedding at Spruce Pine Lodge. It is raining. There is a perfectly nice log cabin reception hall the wedding could be moved into. The guitarist and I are reminding the bride's mother, who is the only person available to discuss this with, that we cannot play our wooden instruments in the rain.
Glancing through the window at her daughter, standing defiantly out there ruining her hairdo, she says: "You're going to have to give her some time; she's in denial."
Outcome: the time available was not sufficient to bring her out of that state of denial, so Joe and I stood in the log cabin, leaning out the window, playing as loudly as we could, while drenched women in filmy and soon ultra-clingy little dresses were shuddering with cold.
Coda: after the reception, which thankfully took place under a roof, the bride and groom, dressed in white satin bicycling outfits and white helmets with white ribbons and special white bikes, went biking away into the rain to some location twelve miles distant. This had been the bride's plan and she stuck with it.
An outdoor wedding is taking place at a lovely bed-and-breakfast in Hillsborough.
We arrive before the rain; the chairs are already set out and so is the gorgeous chuppah, which appears to be of hand-embroidered satin.
As the guests begin to arrive, the heavens open up.
We scurry for the tent, as do the majority of the guests. However, the wedding party and the rabbi are trapped in the inn where they have been signing the ketubah. Water starts to collect in the chuppah and it commences to collapse.
For half an hour, we play in the tent - but not quite far enough into the tent, because there isn't space, so rain pours off the edge of the tent into Ken's guitar case.
People in the doorway of the inn look longingly through the continuing downpour at their friends and relations in the tent, and vice versa.
When the rain slackens and briefly ends, helpful guests rush out and wipe off the seats. The wedding party rushes out of the inn and the rabbi holds one of the quickest services ever.
The deluge recommences and everybody squeezes back into the tent with us, rain still pouring into Ken's case. The next time the rain slacks off, everybody goes home.
Brides do not control the heavens.
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