It’s hard to believe that Erin and I celebrated our six-mothiversary last week. We were married on September 19 near her parents’ home outside Detroit, Michigan. It’s almost surreal to look back on it now: after spending 18 months planning and preparing for the biggest day of your life, it’s a little disorienting when the day comes, and just like that, it’s over and behind you and holy crap, has it been six months already? I’ve been writing and editing and re-writing and re-editing this post ever since, but I’ve come to realize that I can’t possibly write every thing about it that I might like to, so this little re-cap will just have to suffice.
So, to start: it was a beautiful and amazing day. We had an outdoor ceremony and totally lucked out on the weather - it was perfect. There was a lot we didn’t do the traditional route - like the whole thing where you’re not supposed to see each other before the ceremony. We slept in the same bed (with the dog!) the night before, and did photos before the ceremony. Our photographer insisted that I not see her while she was getting ready so she could get some shots when I first saw her in her dress all ready to go, and I’m glad she did because Erin looked incredible. We took some photos at the house, at a couple locations downtown in Detroit and a park before going to the reception hall for a few more pre-ceremony photos. Thankfully, we got half an hour or so to try to calm each other down before the actual ceremony.
The ceremony itself went by pretty quick. It was about two months later when we got the video, and there was a lot of “I don’t even remember that, I was so nervous,” and, “Did I really keep kissing you when I wasn’t supposed to?” Aside from an errant golf ball from the country club next door (it landed pretty close to the bridesmaid, Angie, during a reading by the maid of honor, Erin’s sister Meghan), it went smoothly according to plan. And then we had a big party.
It’s kind of hard to say much more than that. We agreed a long time ago that we weren’t going to let ourselves get stressed out on the big day, because you only get one chance to enjoy it and we were going to do just that. And it was an absolute blast, between the pictures and the party and the pirate outfits (it was Talk Like A Pirate Day, after all, so Meghan picked up some pirate gear for some photos). It was an exhausting day, but a whole lot of fun, and we got incredibly lucky that the weather was great, that people had fun, that the vendors we worked with were all incredible, and that nothing really went wrong. Well, except for that golf ball, but no one was hurt, we kept the ball, and it makes for a good story.
A couple days after the wedding, we came home to DC for a week before our honeymoon: a Caribbean cruise out of San Juan, Puerto Rico. Neither of us had ever been on a cruise, and I hadn’t been out of the country any further than Toronto, so it was really exciting. The ship was amazing - just freakin’ enormous, with shops and restaurants and a Ben & Jerry’s and an ice rink and two pools, and seriously, I still can’t believe how big those ships are. We hit five islands over the course of the week-long trip:
- Barbados: Went snorkeling with sea turtles. Erin touched one, and accidentally kicked another one in the head, and I came home with a bright red back because I foolishly believed that we wouldn’t be in the sun that long and didn’t bother with sun block.
- St. Lucia: Our favorite of the islands. They seem to be making a big push to increase their tourist appeal, because everyone there was really friendly and encouraged us to come back and spend more time on the island (without being pushy like people on some of the other islands). We spent the day doing a bus tour of the island and a nature hike to a mineral spring and waterfall.
- Antigua: Our excursion here was a boat ride, kayaking, and more snorkeling, and met a parrot named Sweet Pea. I’m not going to lie though, this place wasn’t too appealing. We had to get past scores of pushy taxi drivers just to visit the stores and shops that were just outside the port area, and it was definitely the dirtiest of the islands (and yes, I’m well aware that these islands are all pretty poor and rely on tourism for a good deal of money, which makes it all the more surprising that they don’t do more to clean up the town with the port).
- St. Maarten: This excursion was one of my favorites: an ATV tour of the island, with a stop at a beach in the middle. I expected an ATV ride through a forest or something, but no, it was just a line of about twenty four-wheelers tooling down the main road for like half an hour. But it was a cool way to see the island, and we did do some off-roading. We spent about an hour on the beach, and the tour guide just plopped down on a bench and lit himself a joint right there.
- St. Croix: For the final day of the cruise, we got a couple’s massage on the beach. Erin found a couple that will meet you somewhere for a massage, so we agreed to meet them on the beach at this resort. I was a little nervous because we paid ahead of time and couldn’t really do anything about it if we couldn’t find them, but they were all set up on the beach waiting for us when we got there (along with their part-Shepherd Chihuahua, Goliath). The massage was a great way to end the cruise, and we got one last swim in the Caribbean. If you ever make travel plans to St. Croix, do yourself a favor and get in touch with Ambrosia Body Care.
And now, it’s six months later, and I’m in that weird position where it feels like it just happened but also feels so far away at the same time. This is part of the reason that it’s taken me so long to post anything about the wedding: it feels like it just happened, it seems like it was over so quick, and it feels like there’s just so much to say about it that I couldn’t fathom boiling it down without losing so much of it. So, if I may offer a summary:
I married an amazing lady and enjoyed a week in the Caribbean with her, and now I get to spend my whole life with her. Pretty rad, amiright?