Monday, July 10, 2006

Weddings and Weekends

My niece got married this past weekend. It seemed like the hottest day ever, as Gray and I waited for the bridal party in the covered Celebrations tent at the Queen Elizabeth Park's Rose Garden in Vancouver.

I can't look good and sweat at the same time, so I gave up and let the droplets of perspiration run...and took as many pictures as I could. Tracy and Rich married in the traditional manner, along with a few differences.

They held a hand-fasting ceremony, and passed a sword to Rich to welcome him into Tracy's Scottish welcome him into the clan. Every move was explained as they moved along in the ceremony; I was too busy trying to take pictures to really listen. It's another reminder to me that I can only do one thing at a time! Good thing I had Graham with me...he listened as I clicked and sweated.

Kyssa, Tracy's dog, was also decked out in pink and mauve ribbons, the same colour as the handfasting ribbons. I couldn't help but marvel at Kyssa's manners; had I had Lucky and Nate at any would have been a disaster. I shudder to think about it. But Kyssa seemed to handle the crowd and the excitement with aplomb.

Tracy was late, as was her prerogative as a bride...the problem was she had forgotten her veil! So the limousine, in the middle of Vancouver construction and road closures, had to return to
Tracy's home for it. What a wonderful memory to have...

When she arrived...ohhh! She was absolutely transformed from the thin, ethereal child of the mists that I she was a sophisticated, lithe who has grown into her power. But she also has that family trait Heidi and I have...the one where nervousness morphs into giggles, giggles on the edge of tears. How I sympathized with her as she fought for control and conquered her urge to laugh with huge abandonment! Or to howl or sob wildly.

Lorne, my brother-in-law and Tracy's Dad, walked Tracy down the aisle with perfect flair, giving off that certain Scottish air...the one where it seems there is no choice but to step into battle with no fear. Regina, my sister, covered her emotions with charm, smiling and chuckling at something that was said, when she appeared, before Lorne and Tracy. But her eyes lit with relief when her eyes met mine...a familiar face.

I just continued to take pictures, giving up on containing the emotion that now guided my eye, most often flooded with tears.

Gray and I stayed at the Georgian Court Hotel; we were about five blocks away from Capone's in Yaletown, where the reception was held. The dinner was extremely tasty, each course served by the waitstaff to each individual...I chose, from among other delights, crabcakes and prawns, green salad, roasted vegetables, slices of lamb, beef and duck with mashed potatoes, mousse and champagne sorbet and creme! A meal fit to celebrate the re-union between Tracy and Rich, for these two have definitely spent lives together before.

I look forward to knowing Rich better...his perfectly dark twinkling eyes hold great promise of a sense of humour I could really enjoy. Martin, who demonstrated a sensitive side to his nature I had always known was there, gave his toast to the bride, his sister, with remarkable decorum. His stories he remembers about Tracy were beautifully chosen and so characteristic of Tracy's and his relationship.

Other speeches showed me the grown-up side of Tracy...the sophisticated one I had lost track of, a little, over the years. It was good to know a bit about that side of her, too. And further, Rich's childhood friends gave a rendition of Rich that confirms my intuition about his sense of humour.

Graham and I walked back to our hotel; the streets of Yaletown were crowded at ten PM...the time when Gray and I are usually sunk deep into slumber. But this was the new generation...the one that replaces our own...and they were out in full, enjoying the Saturday night ambiance of cafes and lights and music and whispered confidences.

On Sunday, Graham and I visited Granville Street Market. It had been many years since I had been fact, the only thing I remember about it are the cement trucks. I won't tell you how many years that has been.

We found the most unusual items...sea asparagus, lemon vinegar (the best I'd ever tasted), dried chervil, fresh ginger...and I couldn't resist the bread bakery, where I bought bread and buns for a family birthday celebration next Sunday. The produce sections were a feast to the eye. The butcher shops laid out mind-numbing arrays of different cuts of every kind of meat you could imagine. Entertaining would be so easy if I lived closer to this market...if an item is difficult to find, you can be sure it will be here at this market.

But the Island was calling us; it was time to return home. I dragged Graham away from a $500,000 Lamborghini, and we headed for the ferry, our weekend sojourn over.

A beautiful wedding where the guests were treated with honour, and a wonderful shopping excursion...what more could I ask for on a warm summer's weekend?

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