Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Wedding Mission Debriefing: Part 3 (The Reception)

First Dance: Memory in the Making
I think my favorite part of the entire evening was when I walked into the lobby of the building where we were having cocktail hour before moving to the main hall for dinner and dancing. It was just what we had envisioned. Several people had gotten drinks and were lingering around the fountain enjoying the lovely September evening by candlelight. I entered the lobby and everyone had already been there long enough to be having a good time. I thought "What a great party, and WE"RE throwing it!" There was laughter and the din of conversation with our friend, Glen who was playing an acoustical set in the background. One of my first stops was to make my way to him and give him a kiss. If there is anything in the world more wonderful than old friends, I want someone to tell me what it is.

I looked out over the crowd. I made my way through to find several of our friends, chatted a bit, and then went in search of my husband. He had a surprise in the works and I wanted to know how if everything was running on schedule. You see, my son in law's favorite local musician, had been persuaded by my husband (who can be very single minded when he's trying to accomplish something) to come and play just one song. The band,  Mudflap King, was supposed to announce that they had tried to learn the groom's favorite song (which they had) but wanted it to be perfect and then introduce Eddie Smith to sing  Memory in the Making. To all of us the song was the unofficial theme of the wedding.

The entire bit went exactly as planned and my daughter jumped up and down with joy while my son in law stared in disbelief. Clearly The General had plotted this for some time and never let on. They were in shock. They had their first dance to the groom's favorite song and then the bride and her dad danced to The Way You Look Tonight by Sinatra. Next up was the groom and his mother who is one of the most charming women you would ever want to meet. Finally, my husband welcomed everyone and thanked them for coming and officially opened the buffet.

The rest of the night was spent eating delicious food, seeing friends, dancing, and listening not only to Mudflap King who had been hired to play the gig, but Mr. Eddie Smith who did not play his one song and bow out but stayed all night and jammed with the band to the delight of everyone, especially the bride and groom. At one point during the night my husband and his friend, Glen, even sang backup on Midnight Rider.

Do you know what happens at a wedding when the party is over? When the smoke from the sparklers clears, all the leftover food, alcohol, favors, and flowers must be packed up and put in the car (in our case several cars) to go home. Linens must all be collected so they can be returned to the rental place (don't forget the hangers or they may charge you!) Everyone is exhausted because the adrenaline that kept you going through the entire process has now left the building and your body realizes all at once it feels worse than Elvis after a pill, booze, and jelly doughnut binge. It's the middle of the night, you may be slightly tipsy, and people are throwing everything slapdash into your car. You hope those black tablecloths, which are now invisible, are all making it. Once you get home the flowers and food are hauled into the house. The rest can wait until tomorrow. It's 2:00 AM and you collapse into bed.

If you are lucky you can sleep late the next morning. I, on the other hand was hosting a Sunday brunch for everyone who hadn't had enough celebrating...because I'm crazy that way.




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