04 Sep My Wedding – Part Two
PERSONAL POST ALERT
So, continuing on from where I left off. After a restless night of very little sleep, due to the heat, nerves and adrenaline etc. I woke up feeling a little jaded. Our wedding ceremony wasn’t due to start until around 4pm, as it was simply too hot to do it any earlier – as it turned out it was still well over 40 degrees at that time.
While our wedding wasn’t particularly ‘traditional’ there were some things we wanted to keep. This meant that Danielle and I didn’t spend the night together, which works brilliantly for traditional (morning/early afternoon) weddings, but when you have to try and avoid each other it’s far more difficult than you’d think. Especially as I am notoriously unreliable when it comes to matters of getting myself ready or organised (thankfully this does not migrate across to business matters). Thankfully my two slaves (aka best men Alex and James) were on hand to run around for me, my favourite instance being when I had to send Alex to the bridal suite to fetch me some boxer shorts.
I spent much of the day pottering around like a spare part, trying to catch the odd few minutes of sleep and generally trying to keep myself busy – which is much harder than it sounds in that situation. I spent some time writing my cue cards and even managed a quick run through of my speech.
It came time to get ready and the boys and I went into the cinema room to get kitted up. Now, because warm weather is almost guaranteed in the region at that time of year, I was adamant that I would not be wearing a suit and made it clear to all guests that I’d much prefer them to be comfortable than super smart. My groomsmen and I wore simple grey trousers and a white shirt, I added a matching grey waistcoat so that I was identifiable – although this came off pretty quickly, I was melting!
The wind had picked up a bit so when the guests started to arrive the temperature was a bit more bearable. We served some welcome refreshments of water and tinto verano (chilled red wine and lemonade) while we waited for Danielle to be ready.
I hadn’t told anyone, but I had asked my brother to perform the ceremony. Danielle and I do not subscribe to any particular religion and so didn’t feel the need for a minister or anything similar. We wanted to keep it all very informal with an intimate, family-oriented feel to the whole occasion.
In keeping with this idea, I had recorded my dad playing ‘La Cavatina’ on the guitar for the wedding procession- which is one of my favourite pieces of music. It fit the occasion perfectly and was a little different to the traditional Wagner or Pachelbel.
Everything went well, no major hiccups. The weather was immaculate throughout, there was even a bit of a breeze to help with cooling. I remember when Danielle walked around the corner and down the aisle, she looked amazing – I was blown away. Thankfully neither the photographer nor videographer caught my initial reaction, they would’ve seen me mouth the ‘eff’ word to myself.
The ceremony was great, my brother had prepared a moving speech and delivered it impeccably. At points prompting tears from the guests which, in my opinion is the measure of a good wedding. Once we had finished the ceremony we moved round to the courtyard for some refreshments and canapés while Danielle was whisked away by David to have her photos taken. A little while later we were seated for dinner and the speeches started.
Mark (my new father-in-law and Danielle’s stepfather) was up first, and offered me advice for a successful marriage subject to a disclaimer (he’s on his third marriage). Then I was up to do my speech.
It was a bizarre moment for me. I am not often in the position where I have to speak publicly. I was really nervous until I got behind the microphone and suddenly it all got very comfortable. Usually when I stand behind a microphone it’s to sing – the way I see it, speaking is much easier!
I had written my speech out on A4 paper, just 2 pages, nice and short. However, that morning I decided to transfer it onto cue cards and I’m glad I did. It felt much more natural to have prompts instead of reading from a page. The only problem this presented was that I had so much I wanted to say on each point I ended up speaking for nearly 30 minutes. It seemed to be well received, we laughed, cried and toasted.
Then it was the turn of my best men. Now, there is a factor here that benefits me greatly when it comes to these speeches. Nearly every time I have gotten myself into embarrassing situations or any kind of trouble, I have been with one of them! This meant that they had to be kind to avoid incriminating themselves in any reported shenanigans.
So, after escaping relatively unscathed and accidentally delaying dinner by overrunning, my guests were well lubricated and ravenous, and so, dinner was served.
We started with a selection of tapas which was served on a sharing slate (one between two). The tapas we had selected were a shot of gazpacho, seared beef skirt and rocket, chorizo with manchego and dates wrapped in 5J Jamon Serrano. The main was a choice between chicken stuffed with pistachios and dry fruit; and grilled sea bass with red pepper coulis. Followed by a trio of desserts made up of olive oil and lemon sponge, eton mess and chocolate tartlet.
After dinner Danielle and I were whisked away for some sunset photos with David before the bar opened, the music started and we partied until 4am, at which point I partook in my own personal tradition of getting naked and jumping in the pool before retiring to bed, in preparation for our pool party the next day.
It was a great day and both Danielle and I enjoyed it immensely as did our guests, so it seemed. It was important to us that people remembered our wedding as fondly as we would and from conversations we’ve had since returning we certainly achieved that. You can view some of the highlights of our wedding video here.
In my next blog I’ll talk about our mini-moon to Seville.