After the ceremony, it was time to part ways. Guests went off down the hill to the Northampton Brewery to enjoy a cocktail hour with crostini and fruit&cheese platters, and we went to Union Station to take pictures with our wedding party. Oh, my poor pictures. We got some pretty decent shots in there, but all we got for sun was a picture of J and I looking out the window at one point at the few minutes of sun there were. Ah, well. You can't have everything. We arrived at the reception, Rev. Steve introduced our sisters and then Kate and J Martini! We got a standing ovation as we walked in, I took over the mic from Steve and said our thank-yous, and then it was time for champagne! My brother-in-law Will made a lovely toast, followed by heartfelt and devoted words from our dear friend Tawanna. Dinner was served! Due to all the mingling we had to do, J and I barely got to eat our dinner by the time we were ready to cut the cake. My sister S's beautiful masterpiece cake was displayed on a mirrored table, complete with red roses, chocolate-dipped strawberries, and cocoa-covered almonds. We've got some lovely pics from the cake cutting, with only minor smearage. We had a fake, first dance for the photographer, some quick pics with VIPs, and a photo shoot with our friends' D&C baby Stuey, before the photographer had to leave, and then we were ready to dance. Thanks to sister S's partner Tim, we had a great time starting with our song "Sunrise, Sunrise" by Norah Jones (an instrumental of which we had walked down the aisle to just a few hours before), followed by romantic old jazz vocals, transitioning into more modern music as the night wore on. We danced and danced some more, getting some of my favorite pictures of all- even my Dad was cutting a rug! And singing to "Eight Days a Week"! And smiling! And having a good time! Holy crap! He was so great at the wedding, especially later on at the reception- I was floored, and we were both so moved by the love and dedication flowing in from all sides. Not just at the wedding, but throughout the whole engagement. It was truly a coming-together of our great, big, extended, chosen family. Late, late at night, we tossed our bouquets (an advantage of going to a lesbian wedding!) Unfortunately, though my mother insisted that I aim for my sister, and though I tried valiantly for Mom's sake, I wound up impaling her with it instead. Oops. And J's sister S, a very non-committal gal, there with her used-to-be-then-just-friends-for-a-while-now-on-a-hiatus-from-our-hiatus guy K, caught J's bouquet no problem. Ah, well. I think that tradition stinks anyway. Go ahead sis, tempt those fates! Little do they know who your wedding-coordinator is! Lemme at 'em!
We finally left the party at about 12:30 am, and headed to our hotel. Now, the chilled champagne and chocolate strawberries were nice, as was the jacuzzi, but I was about ready to keel over. The combination of all the stress of the last several days, the heady emotional leap I'd just taken, the incredibly long day on little sleep, all the hairspray and pins, and my insano-monster-high-heels had taken its toll. We took the tub, but I couldn't stomach the champagne (and had only half a glass at the party- my tummy felt 10 sizes too small), and after extracting the crazy number of bobby pins from our heads and showering off the chemicals, we were out.
And up the next morning, only to realize that we had no shoes! And I sure as hell was not about to put the monster heels on again- my feet were still in some serious pain the next day. Stranded as we were until the delivery was made, we were late for our breakfast with friends. We made it eventually, and I am so glad to have spent a little extra time with my friend Kate and her Mom and Step-Dad. Those three were so important to me as a kid, and I was ecstatic that they were able to come all the way from Illinois and Ohio for the wedding. After breakfast was a little packing-time at home, and off we were on our honeymoon!
I love the Highlands Inn. Love it. I took J there on our first trip together, then again to propose to her, and that was our first honeymoon stop. We stayed in the most expensive room- it was a honeymoon after all (although I don't know if I won't be checking out that room every time now, that's the danger). Wonderful queen bed with a canopy, two-person shower, fireplace, comfy couch, two-person spa right in the room, and the tv on a swivel plate so it can face the couch or the bed or the spa. I'd like to say we did nothing but make sweet, sweet love the whole time, and don't get me wrong- we did plenty o' that, but the wedding also completely wiped us both out. We had not much left. And J got a bit sick. And I hate to confess it, but we watched the entirety of The L Word, Season 3 in two days. And had a darn good time, too. Dear goddess, that room was comfortable. The last couple of days of the honeymoon, we went to Montreal, which was ok, but I would reccommend having a plan for the public transportation system ahead of time. The walking was a little nutty. And I got sick. But it was fun talking to the waiters in French! And J got to tell the Border Patrol that I was her wife, twice! Tee hee.
So, now we're back and we're not sick anymore, and things are back to normal. Almost. Things feel a little different now, so subtly, but imperceptibly powerfully. She's my wife. And married life is good. I really hope I can be as good a spouse to her as she is to me. It's one big trip, this marriage thing! So far, it's pretty exhiliarating!