A sacred ceremony and a weekend of memory making
By Karen Taylor
“Sometimes memories sneak out of my eyes and roll down my cheeks.”
This poignant thought from all-greatquotes.com illustrates the best and worst of the Internet. Good news/bad news? All that Internet junk occasionally includes the rare golden nugget of information. It’s a numbers thing. Post trillions of junk mails on Pinterest, YouTube, Google, Facebook, and other social networks, and the law of averages insures it won’t all be bad.
Surfing through photographs posted online from the recent marriage of my darling nephew Dustin Hoes to his childhood friend Paige French, the Internet conveniently dropped the above quote into my lap. The golden nugget was perfectly appropriate after a weekend of feeling acutely conscious of the memories we were making.
Dustin’s 91-year-old Eastland grandmother and I traveled to Dallas for a packed schedule of rehearsals, dinners, photo sessions, wedding, after-party, and post-wedding breakfast. Joyful greetings between family and friends included some who were strangers before the wedding and now are in-laws.
The entire weekend was a glorious celebration for the senses. Music at the elaborate wedding dinner was the romantic sea upon which the party sailed. Dustin had hand-picked hours of seasoned, romantic songs beginning with It Had to Be You for the traditional first dance and progressing into an evening rich with lyrics and melodies, dances, and dance-floor acrobatics. Hoes brothers Ryan and Kevin handled deejay, sound and tech tasks.
Runaway winner of dance acrobatics was the flower girl performing expert cartwheels in her adorable white-lace dress and crown of tiny white flowers.
Close runners-up were light-hearted performances by bridegroom and mother, Eastland native Kathy Lynn Jones Hoes. They started with a traditional two-step before breaking into a wild combo of jazz, hip hop, twist, chicken dance, ‘50s and ‘60s rock and roll, and more. Before long, Dustin’s father Ron Hoes left his normally serene personality at the head table and joined his wife in the hilarious dance routines. Next came Paige’s parents, and soon I was considering sliding under the table in case I might be commandeered to do the watusi in front of 120 guests.
Vintage music and joyful dancing created a deeply nostalgic experience, admittedly present at most weddings be they small, big, pomp and circumstance, elegant, simple, sacred or civil.
After joining four generations of two families and friends as they prayed, promised, danced, dined, hugged, kissed, and laughed, an ah-ha! moment blossomed. Weddings are so beguiling because they are all about love. Plain, fancy, complex, mushy, marvelous love. As in those trendy phrases advising us to Eat, Pray, Love. Or to Live, Laugh, Love, or today’s gem about memories turning into happy tears.
Imagine living each day in a wedding-like environment surrounded by beautiful, joyful people, flowers, food, champagne, and romantic music. Add groups of known-and-new family and friends sharing hugs, laughter, and anecdotes. Sense the mood – the unspoken promise of future special events, children, grandchildren, weddings, and celebrations.
It’s the Fairy Godmother Syndrome – everyone appears at their absolute best. The bride is a goddess of beauty – all white, frothy and flowered, ribboned, and pearled, and above all glowing with happiness. The bridegroom is princely – handsome and ridiculously attractive in formal black, and ready to perform a remarkable dance with his mother.
The celebration became an enchanted circle for and between the bridal couple, for the parents who nurtured these impressive newlyweds, and for each other. Further enhancing the aura were the traditional attendants’ champagne toasts revealing a momentary view of young people who clearly understand the value of friendship, good times, and familial camaraderie.
If only, instead of rice or rose petals, we had a marvelous little silk bag full of Wedding Dust to sprinkle on difficult days, impatient moments, and unfriendly moods. We could sprinkle the bride and bridegroom with a shower of Wedding Dust, keeping a wee little sprinkle to dust on ourselves.
Right now I could swear I hear the spectacular Louis Armstrong singing What a Wonderful World. Apparently some of that sacred sparkle stuck with me all the way back to Cisco.