I love weddings. I’m also a bit of a sucker for wedding bloopers (or just bloopers in general) so I always watch those stupid shows like ‘Wild Weddings!!!’ or ‘Weddings Gone Bananas!!!’ or whatever. However, this weekend I attended a wedding that was way way up there on the craziness scale. This is the tale of the wedding of Julie and Dave, a tragic (well, not totally!) opera in three parts.
Overture: The night before
Julie, a postdoc in my Ph.D. lab, also did her Ph.D. up in Cleveland, so many many mutual friends came down from Clevo for the wedding. It was a lot of fun to see everyone, some of whom I hadn’t seen since we moved to NC almost 2.5 years ago, so we gathered everyone (including our five houseguests!) at our house for some drinking the night before the wedding. At about 10:30, one of our guests (Dr. Jeff… er … I mean Dr. Sandwich – an actual medical doctor!) received a phone call from a slightly panicked bridesmaid saying that the bride was not feeling well, and what was his medical advice? We didn’t really know the details but all were waiting to see how she was going to feel the next day, sure that she just had a case of the pre-wedding jitters (“Did you check her feet? Are they cold?”).
Part I: The ceremony
(I would like to begin this part by stating that in the car on the way over to the ceremony? I felt totally nervous and slightly nauseated. So if I turn out to be psychic, this will have been one of the first examples of my powers.)
At 2pm, we all show up at the Duke Chapel, where the wedding was to take place. Everything is beautiful. We get our programs, are ush-ed to our seats, and sit down to listen to the pre-wedding organ music. After a while the priest comes out with the groom, and we all get a little nervous. The priest tells us that our Jules is not feeling well enough to get married. She’s not really strong enough to walk down the aisle, and it has been decided that we’d try again later at the reception. He did stress that she wasn’t having cold feet and that she was, in fact, actually at the chapel in the back room, but secretly we wondered. Their engagement had been called off once before, and although things seemed to be fine this time, we thought that it was theoretically possible that she was having second thoughts, and had gotten herself so stressed out about it that it made her sick. Hey. It could happen.
Anyhow, the ambulance came and carted her off to the Duke Hospital. Most people had left by this point, but a few remained, and we actually went into the chapel and staged pictures – sat one person in each aisle seat and had the bridesmaids and groomsmen pretend to process for some pictures. It was pretty amusing. Here are Amy and Missy during the fake picture posing:
Part II: The reception
At 5:30, the cocktail hour begins. The reception is at this swanky country club. Everything is beautiful. I drink gin and tonics. Mmm. And later gin gimlets, which are really quite tasty. We all chat. Here's Bayly, Kristin, Tori and Karen chatting:
We file into the reception hall to be seated for dinner. Eat our salads… still not quite sure what is going on. The head table has all the bridesmaids and groomsmen sitting at it, but the bride and groom seats in the middle are empty. Next, dinner. Dinner itself is eaten, still no sign of the bride and groom. By the time we get to dessert, we’re pretty sure they aren’t getting married that night. The DJ tries to get everyone dancing and my friends and I are happy to comply. It was still pretty bizarre though, because we were celebrating a wedding that still had not occurred, without the primary participants. At about 9:30 or so, Dave (groom) and parents arrive without Julie. Here's Dave being grilled for info (At first, I felt tacky about taking this picture as it seemed a bit like rubbernecking, but I saw the hired photographer doing it too, so I felt better):
Mom and Dad of the bride give a speech to tell us what is going on. Julie’s dehydrated and her electrolytes are all out of whack – she’s been on an IV at the hospital getting back in shape. They were concerned about possible unexpected side effects if they let her out of the hospital early, so she ended up staying, but the wedding was going to take place after all, at the hospital (!), with room only for a few people. Also, hey! We need to eat the cake, so someone cut it and they served it. Crazy. It was tasty though. Yum! We had about an hour and a half until everyone was leaving for the hospital wedding, so the strange party continued.
(A side note: at some point during the night, I found out that I had pulled an Alexandra Kerry and that my undergarments were visible under my dress in all the flash photography. See here (in the daylight):
and here (with a flash):
At least I was wearing a cute bra, but I was wearing FUNCTIONAL (read: ugly) underwear. Hurrah. So when everyone develops their pictures and sees me in my undies, thats what happened. I am not the wedding floozy! It was an accident!! The dress was DARK MAROON for gods sake!)
Part III. The hospital
We show up to the hospital at about 10:45ish, and had a very surreal conversation with the security guard where we said ‘We’re here for the wedding’ and he pointed us towards the hospital chapel. The room was very small, but I’d estimate that about 40 people were crammed in there, including the wedding party:
The bridesmaids filed in, we all hummed the wedding march, and Jules came in looking radiant in her actual wedding dress and veil. A short but sweet ceremony followed:
and they were married! Hurrah!
Then we went downstairs to the hospital lobby for pictures:
Epilogue: Our house
We got home at probably 1 am, but everyone was wide awake from all the excitement. And we wanted some drinks. So other Clevelanders also came over for the planned merriment. HOWEVER. We do not typically lock the door that goes from our garage into our home, as the garage doors themselves are locked, and there is no alternate way into the garage. But this time someone had inadvertently locked the door on their way out. And we had no house keys. I have mine on my car key ring, and I hadn’t driven to the wedding and had only a cute LITTLE purse, so no keys. Brian doesn’t carry his house key on his car key ring, he’s got this little key wallet – which he hadn’t brought. Of course, we’re in the garage with all of the tools, so everyone gave their best shot at picking our lock (where was brother Jim when we needed him):
But we gave in eventually and ended up calling a locksmith.
A good time was had by all. The End.
P.S. to wedding attendees - I will post pictures online and send you all a link, and I hope you will do the same!! I'm dying to see the pics!!