Sweety and I were married on a Saturday; it was July 25, 2009. It wasn’t quite as hot as today will be. It was a perfect, non-humid 25°C (77°F).
We had a small wedding, which was initially going to be at the home of friends. As the date drew nearer, Sweety’s mom was having challenges with mobility. One day, we had the idea to ask the management of the seniors’ residence where her parents lived if they would consider hosting our wedding. They immediately said yes, and were excited to do it. The place has a beautiful dining room which, after the residents’ dinner time, was transformed into a chapel for our ceremony. Then while we were out on the patio for a champagne toast to us by Sweety’s dad, the staff replaced tables and chairs for our reception. Because of the facility’s needs and obligations, we had to be out by 11:00 pm, but that was fine.
Some of the residents came into the “chapel” to watch us be married and later joined us to share champagne on the patio, making our evening even more special with the welcome they gave us in their home.
When Sweety’s mom became tired from all the festivities, she was escorted to their room so she could retire for the evening. We didn’t know then that we’d be saying goodbye to her forever, a short three months later. What a gift to have been able to share our day with her in a way that was comfortable, special and enjoyable for her.
One of my cousins from Liverpool, along with her husband and daughter, travelled to Canada for our wedding. We’d visited them the year before and said they should come to see Canada. She answered, “We’d come for a wedding.” So there it was then; challenge accepted. While here, they wanted to see the Rocky Mountains (which many Brits think is a “couple of hours’ drive” from Winnipeg as they are not used to the vastness of the geography we live in), so the honeymoon consisted of six of us in a van for over a week. It was so much fun. Another cousin had hoped to come with her family, too, but a health issue scuttled that plan. They did come seven years later and we all enjoyed an almost identical tour of Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta and a touch of British Columbia as in the original honeymoon tour of July and August, 2009.
In the months and weeks leading up to our wedding day, we worked on the various aspects of the ceremony. A dear friend of ours was an ordained minister, and she wrote and officiated a beautiful, very personal service. Our children all took part. And I made up a CD of “our songs” which we gave out to guests at the end of the evening. I’ve featured many of those on the blog. A friend designed our invitations, program, CD cover and stickers for the bottles of wine served at the reception.
When looking for a piece of music to use as a processional, I started searching for string quartet transcriptions of songs we liked, as there were few string orchestras doing versions of popular music at the time and we wanted something unique to open our ceremony. Well, didn’t I find a strings version of Coldplay’s “In My Place” — it was exactly what I was looking for! I remember how excited I was for Sweety to get home so I could tell her, and she was delighted, too. We listened to Coldplay a lot then, and had seen them in concert just over a month before the wedding. For our recessional music, we used the “Allegro from Concerto for Oboe d’amore,” by Johann Sebastian Bach.
Music has always been an essential part of our life; I talked in my post on Snow Patrol’s “Chasing Cars” how I used that song as inspiration when writing to my sweety the night before we married. (Edit: Neither of us can remember our sleeping arrangement that night; I thought and originally posted that we were apart but Sweety says we were both home. We had a houseful of visitors at the time. But we were apart most of the day, and I did not see her or her unique and stunning wedding gown until our ceremony the next day. I only saw the sash while were were shopping for a matching tie for me.)
Our marriage, honeymoon, and our life together have all been a little unconventional, but always memorable and it is an abundant blessing, this marriage we celebrate today.
Now you know a little about why this is my song of the day for today. Thanks for joining me here, and please enjoy.
Here’s the official audio for the song from the Vitamin String Quartet’s YouTube channel:
And, here’s the official video of Coldplay performing the song which appears on their 2002 album, A Rush of Blood to the Head: