the rest is still unwritten

Saturday, October 22, 2011

An UnBEETable Adventure 4: the Wedding


For many of us, weddings bring images of white dresses, teary-eyed bridesmaids, flowers, rings, kisses and I do's. We find ourselves humming the notes of a familiar succession of chordsthe Wedding March.

Something Old.
Something New.
Something Borrowed.
Something Blue.

All of these images, sounds and emotions usually add up to one thing:

However, ask any bride, and she can tell you with no hesitation that the road to perfection is usually far from 'perfect'.


OCTOBER 8 - The Big Day.

11:00 amSince today was going to be a big day, we all allowed ourselves to sleep in a little bit later than we have been doing for the past few days. So instead of the usual four hours of sleep, that night we got six. As I wake up, I turn to Beets and rouse her awake. She immediately gets up and heads to the bathroom to start freshening up. Next, I turn to Twin and try to wake her.

"Twiiiiin," she mutters groggily, "I feel like crap..."

Oh gosh! I think to myself, Here we go. Pre-wedding jitters... Now, I'm not sure how Iron Man prepared that day, but let me tell you, getting Twin to the church was something short of an ordeal. It was time to put Battleplan: Bride to Altar into action.

"Twiiiiin!" croaks Twin from the bed, "I have food poisoning..."

Upon hearing this, Beets rushes out of the bathroom, toothbrush dangling from her mouth, and her eyes as big as saucers. I shrug my shoulders and at the same moment, we both catch each other rolling our eyes.

Now, maybe it really was food poisoning (hangover), but Beets and I believe that a majority of what she was feeling that morning had to do with nerves. To be fair though, Twin did make many visits to the bathroom

In order to avoid any more undue stress on Twin, I humor the possibility that she in fact was suffering from food poisoning and offer my assistance. I grab a bucket from the bathroom and lay it by her bed, encouraging her by saying "Better out than in". After, I was zooming around the room and the bathroom yelling for guidance as I packed her bag.
"Are you showering here or at Marisal?"
"Are you wearing a bra under your gown?"
"What about for the dress at the reception?"
"Which one is your toothbrush again?"
(Despite asking her which one was her toothbrush, I still managed to pack the wrong one... I brought Beets' toothbrush instead.... Beets searched for it for a good ten minutes...)

Now you see, we were booked at the Parador, but for the big day, Twin got a room at the Hotel Marisal which is literally a 20 second walk from the church. We were meant to be there at 1pm, gather at the church at 3:30 and start the ceremony at four.

It was past 12:30pm, Beets and I were unshowered, Twin was still in bed and showed no signs of wanting to get up.


"I need to talk to my mom." Twin says decisively. Yeah right. Food poisoning my butt.

After trying to call her Mom's hotel room and text her cell phone we still couldn't reach her. Beets and I decided that one of us should go find her (me) while the other stands guard in the room (Beets). As I rush out of the hotel room, I run into Twin's three older sistersQuin, Pards and Pennyand found out that Twin's mom is already at Marisal.

"Help me!" I plead immediately. The four of us then return to the room and try to talk Twin out of bed.

"You need to be at Marisal by one."
I can't move!
"You'll be late for your own wedding. They'll start at four with or without you."
I feel like crap!
"That's not food poisoning..."
It's food poisoning!!!

After assuring them that I will do my best to get her to the altar, Twin's three nonplussed, unconvinced and now extremely concerned sisters leave our room with more decorations for the wedding and reception.


1:15 pm"Listen Twin," I begin calmly, "You told me I was coming to your wedding by hook or by crook. And I am telling you now that I will get you to the altar by hook or by crookeven if Beets and I have to carry you down the aisle."

"Beets," says Beets to Twin, "You have to get up."

Beets and I naturally fell into a good-cop/bad-cop routine, and to be quite honest, we were pretty good.

Twin looks from me to Beets, finally smilesthen dives back under the covers. Eye-roll number two from Beets and I.

From under the covers"I need to talk to Iron Man," says Twin with unmistakable Twin finality.

Beets and I lock eyes, too alarmed to roll our eyes this time.

"Uh, Twin... Isn't that, like, not allowed?"

"I need to talk to Iron Man."

For about an hour Beets and I text/call everyone from Twin's mom, her sisters and the other bridesmaidsbut no one knew where Iron Man was. Last we heard was that he went for a jog on the beach. I ran all over the hotel checking hallways and hotel rooms, but to no avail. Feeling a bit defeated, we step onto the balcony for some air. In about two minutes' time, we see a familiar figure running three floors below. It wasn't Iron Man, but it was close enough. It was X, Iron Man's youngest brother.

"X!!!" We both yell at the same time, "We need you to find Iron Man!"

"On it!" he replies, and jogs off in the other direction.


2:20 pmWe step back into the room and update Twin on the Iron Man situation. We continue our tactics of trying to convince Twin to get her out of bed, I, believing Twin was actually sick and telling her we'll deal with it and help her through it, and Beets, telling her to simply get a grip and get her butt out of bed (good cop/bad cop).


A knock on the door.

It was Iron Man. Talk about a knight in shining armor.

I catch him up on the situation, which he takes in calmly as he walks into our room.

Sensing the need for privacy, Beets and I step onto the balcony and shut the door behind us and we wait. And wait. And wait.

Finally, the door opens. Iron Man pops his head out and says, "She's ready."

We walk back into the room to see Iron Man kiss Twin on the forehead and leave the room just as calmly as he entered.

Twin looks up at us and says,

"He got down on one knee and asked me to marry him again."



With a renewed spirit, Twin finally gets out of bed and takes a shower. Being pressed for time, Beets and I decide to split up. I was to accompany Twin to Marisal and shower and get ready there, while Beets will get ready at the Parador and meet us at the Church. We soon texted Momsy telling her to gather the other bridesmaids and to meet us in the lobby ASAP. As I look around the room, I realize that there are two bags to carry, a suitcase, the wedding dress, the veil and Twin's reception outfit. And with my prayers answered we hear another knock on our doorit was Penny. She had come to help us get Twin to Marisal.

After gathering our things, we head down to the lobby.

Now, it might have been the nerves or maybe she actually was feeling sick, but at the time Twin could care less about what she put on (one of my tops, a wrinkled pair of pants she had already worn, her haira bird's nest, giant sunglasses, and a giant water bottle). Upon meeting the other bridesmaids downstairs, one of them, Preggers (who you haven't met yet), exclaims: "You look like a homeless person!"


2:30pm (an hour and a half later than scheduled)We finally leave the Parador and head to Marisal.


Bedroom 1: One bride, four bridesmaids, two of Twin's sistersPards and Pennyand me.
Bedroom 2: Kids plus Twin's parents
Kitchen: Groomsmen and other manly men.

Two bathrooms for all of us to share.

The place was a warzone. Suitcases and overnight bags were strewn open across the living room floor of the tiny apartment like disemboweled soldiers; hairspray like gunsmoke; bridesmaids at every reflective surface with the same concentration and focus as an official contemplating the next move (Hair up or down? Is this too much blush?!). Amidst the sound of heavy artillery (hairdryersthere were three), commands were being yelled as though from a general to his subordinates:
"Her hair needs to be pulled back!"
"That was the last freaking bobby pin!"
"I call the bathroom next!"
"Somebody get her veil!!!"

Finally, the groomsmen, who were forced to share the tiny kitchen, left the apartment like soldiers getting to their battle stations (fall in line at the church).

Quite impressively though, in the midst of it all, Penny was able to document the scene with the calm and level-headedness of a regular Nat Geo photog. Or it might also just be that she's tougher than most of us there (I heard she didn't even cry at the wedding!).

Something Old.
Something New.
The 'Something Borrowed' shall remain a secret.
Something Blue.

As the hands of time seemed to be ticking much faster than usual on that day, the bride and her entourage could not seem to keep up. As if I wasn't stressed enough, Twin's Mom comes in and says: "Geo. You are in charge."


Also, remember how Beets was getting ready at the Parador in order to save time and space at the Marisal? Well, at 3:45 her last text read:

"Just finished showering. Where are you?"

She's not gonna make it.

T3 and Beets were the official flowergirls. With T3 in Manila, and Beets still at the Parador, we were down two (all) flowergirls.

I keep this information to myself so as not to freak anybody out. I check in on Twin and the bridesmaids to see how everyone was doing.

How many bridesmaids does it take to make a bride? Cammy and Momsy helping Twin.

Finally though, with gentle but firm encouragement, I usher the last bridesmaid out of the apartment (Momsywho I found squatting next to a socket straightening her hair) and lock the door behind me.

It was game time.


3:50pm (20 minutes later than scheduled)We gather at the Iglesia de San Salvador.

With only ten minutes to go, we hustled into marching position and held our breaths.

Sonia, the wedding coordinator: "If you're happy and you know it clap your hands!" Iron Man: "Not now Sonia."
Just about to ready to begin.

Suddenly, a long note on the violin is played, and the first pair (Iron Man and his mom) take their first step down the aisle, I soon realized something: Beets wasn't there. But we'll get to that later.


4:00pmPerfectionRight on schedule.

Iron Man and his Mom, Tita Honey start the procession.
Me and Pards, Veil.
Momsy with her two escorts, Barca and Futbol. I still don't know how this happened...
Ring-bearer: Nyops, Quin's daughter. Bible- and Coin-bearer: Shwekky, carried by her Daddy, Pards' husband.
Hi Nyops!
Man of Honor: Fletcher, Quin's son.
Matron of Honor: Penny.

As the members of the entourage finally take our seats, the familiar tune of the Wedding March is replaced by Pachelbel's Canon in D Major. Immediately, all heads turn to the back of the church.

Waiting with baited breath...

Twin walking down the aisle with her Mom and Dad. This is also the point where many of us start to cry.

The stress of the morning and afternoon quickly dissolve as the figure of Twin inches closer and closer. This is why we came to Nerja. For this second, this minute, and the better half of an hour that would soon follow. Before I knew it, my lip started to shake, my eyes got moist, and there was a sniffle in my nose. Across the way, bridesmaids and sisters were afflicted with the same condition. Next to me, Momsy's husband, Papa Lee, put his hand on my shoulder and gave it a gentle squeeze. This only made it worse. My pathetic simper was now a full-fledged cry.

After kissing and hugging her parents, Twin takes Iron Man's outstretched hand and they take their place at the altar.

Harpist, Soprano Soloist, and Violinist.
Soccerhontas, Ceremony's Lector.

As we take our seats, the ceremony begins.

And at that moment, out of the corner of my eye, I catch a glimpse of a harried Beets standing in the side of the church.

Where were you?! I mouth to her. Now, I must explain that I am painfully near-sighted and possess poor lip-reading reading skills and so I was unable to make out what she was mouthing back. I did however manage to interpret her hand gestures to mean "zipper" and make out one word "Popped". I throw my hands in the air and mouth "Ayayay..." to which Beets replies with a shoulder shrug. After taking a few pictures, she slinks down the side of the church and makes her way to sit with the bridesmaids.

The ceremony continues.

Pards and I doing our duty.

Before long the ceremony was almost over.

And of course, it was time for


And with that, Twin and Iron Man were married.


With a round of applause (and requests for more kisses), we welcomed the newly-wed couple.

Sonia informs us that it was now time for pictures. As Twin and Iron Man stood hand-in-hand taking pictures with various groups of the wedding party, I made my way towards Beets to find out exactly what happened to her.

Now, does anyone know what the perfect cure is for an emotional hangover? Simple. A funny story.

Caught up in the stress and frenetic pace of the day, Beets and I both abandoned our texting and focused on getting ready and getting to the church. Beets explained that she did in fact make it in time for the march. She took a cab from the Parador to the Balcon de Europa and hoofed it to the chapel. The problem was, in her efforts to make it on time (i.e. sprinting in heels and a body con grown-up-flowergirl dress) her dress' zipper poppedand the zipper in question went all the way down her back. Ultimately, she decided not 'march' down the aisle in order to avoid exposing her backside to the entire crowd of the town square. But that is not to say she didn't march. She explained how she 'walked' with the march. The image of Beets, her hands clasping her zipper behind her; her back against the wall the side of the church; doing her step, step, step to the pace of the wedding party; forced a giggle out of me. That explains why she ended up in the side part of the front of the church. So in effect, she did 'walk'.

After hugging and more laughter, we took our positions for the pictures.
Now, that's a good-lookin' wedding party, if I do say so myself.


After the pictures are over, Sonia informs the wedding party that we were to gather at the front of the church to welcome the newly-weds.


One Fine Day.

You know what else was cool?

The entire town square was there to celebrate with us.

Little town, full of little people...
Seriously, it was pretty cool. EVERYONE was so happy.


We then head off to the edge of the Balcon and take more pictures.

The newlyweds.
The newlyweds with Iron Man's family.
Twin and her family.

Twin and her army: Sweet Pea, Preggers, Twin, Momsy, Beets, Cammy and me.



White dresses and teary-eyed bridesmaids.
Flowers, rings, kisses and I do's.

Something Old.
Something New.
Something Borrowed.
Something Blue.

Earlier that day, while Beets and I waited on the balcony for Iron Man to sweep Twin off her feet all over again, Beets asked me two questions:

"What is it about weddings that make people nervous? Why do people cry?"

At first I didn't know what to say. It really made me think.

I was certain that for most, the tears cried at a wedding are tears of joy. With this wedding at least, I can attest to that. The wedding is as official as official gets. She is his, and he is hers. Til death do us part. An exciting and unpredictable new chapter in the lives of two people which will now be written as one.

But that's the funny thing about beginnings. With the beginning of a new chapter, the one before must always inevitably end. Sure there are tears of joy, but I can't shake of the fact that perhaps a part, even if it's a very very small part, of each tear weeps for what has finally come to a close.

Walking down the aisle. We see our friend, our best friend, sister, daughter, niece, Twin, take her place beside her man as his wife.
Til death do us part.
It's as official as official gets.

We can't help but be selfish. We want our friend, sister, daughter, Twin to come home to us. But at the end of the day, she comes home to her homethe one she will now begin to build with her husband.

And that, dear readers, though it may somehow pain us, is such a remarkably beautiful thing. We never lose a friend, a sister, a daughter or a Twin. Things may change, but in many ways, they stay very much the same. Weddings are meant to be a celebration of love, no matter what anyone else may say. There is no true lossonly happiness, growth and love.

There is a familiar saying, which I will now adapt to this story, and which I believe to be truer than true:

"I did not lose a Twin. I gained a Triplet."

That's why people cry at weddings. We cry because we are happy. We cry because we are so happy it hurts. We cry because our friend, our sister, daughter, Twin has never been more beautiful in her life. We cry because all around us there is love. We cry because despite zippers, war zones and food poisoning; that day is perfect.


5:20 pmArm in arm, with smiles on our lips, tears drying in our eyes, love in hearts and butete in our bellies we headed over to Casa Luque.

Next ChapterIt's a SURPRISE!


1 comment:

  1. what a CRAZY day that was. i read the whole thing. at first i expected a perfect day for the bride, but then "FOOD POISONING" haaaaa... i couldn't imagine what you've all gone through that day. Ya'll felt nervous , panicked, stressed out, sad, confused, anxious, and of course Happy!! I like how Iron Man knelt down and ask Twin to mary him again (almost cried) and beets's zipper popped and went all the way day down, twas funny!. i!! it's not the usual Wedding day i would have imagined but thats what made a perfect wedding!.. love the blog!!