The minister wore a long purple robe, and she used a braided rope that looked kind of like a giant friendship bracelet to tie together the hands of the couple. The ceremony, held outside at a nature center, was attended by family and friends as well as a red fox, a red-tailed hawk, and several peacocks. Teary mothers lit candles, little children squirmed in white folding chairs, a man played folk music on a guitar, and the couple exchanged vows in soft female voices. The congregation could not help laughing every time a peacock chimed in with a screeching call.
Driving to Gorgeous City that morning, I had speculated as to whether or not LovesWolves would wear a dress to her own wedding. She did not. She wore cream colored pants and shirt, with a maroon garment over the top that looked formal and ethnic. Her bride wore the more traditional white wedding dress with a most lovely swishy, swirly skirt. I kept waiting, during the ceremony, for some explanation of LovesWolves' garment, but the outfit, she told me later, was just something she'd bought. Disappointed, I began spreading rumors that it was a traditional wedding garment worn by her greatgrandfather and brought to this country in a wooden box, passed down through the family. The symbols on the cloth were Celtic, I told the people sitting at my table, and the fringe represented the community that would be supporting the new couple. By the time I had told the story three or four times, it was beginning to sound quite plausible.
This wedding was the first I've been to in a long time that didn't include any sexist traditions: I didn't mutter under my breath even once, which might be some kind of new record for me. Afterwards, we carried our chairs from the lawn down into the big main room of the nature center for an afternoon of eating and talking. Several family members got up to the microphone to give toasts that were funny and touching. "The ceremony was great," the man next to me said. "It was just this side of sappy." I spent time sorting out the relatives on both sides of the family as I sat at a table eating delicious food. The wedding cake was chocolate and vegan: definitely my kind of wedding.
The bride and bride.