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New Zealand Trip Day 20 – The Wedding

100327 The Wedding

We’ve travelled to New Zealand to attend Brenda’s cousin Geoff’s wedding to Lisa.

Note: There were hundreds of photos taken today, even thousands counting those taken by everybody. I selected the ones that best tell the story of the wedding rather than just the best photos.

The wedding was scheduled for 2pm but Brenda’s niece, Jessica was due to arrive around 1pm so we wanted to be sure to be there for that. Regardless we had some time to kill, so enjoyed a leisurely breakfast at the bach:

Don and I went to the wedding location to see if they needed a hand setting anything up while “the aunties” (Brenda, Jean and Di) went to Whangerai to do some shopping. Geoff told us the brides desires vis-à-vis a simple tidied up sort of aisle to the location on the beach where the ceremony was to transpire.

This is what it looked like before we started:

Don and I figured out the sweep of the thing and I figured it’d be a great chance to enlist the stray kids to occupy their time – and it worked (though Don worked up a lather implementing the plan as well).

This is what it looked like after, a little more than just a little tidied up:

About a ½ hour before the ceremony Brenda and Don did the final sprucing of it by lining out the aisle with toitoi (Maori for “don’t put it out too early because the wind will destroy it”)

Around about 2pm the guests and the groom and his mates meandered out to the end of the aisle and we waited for the bride. It was the first wedding I’ve been to where virtually everybody was barefooted for comfort and otherwise dressed up.

The bride and bridesmaids appeared, socially acceptably late and began their procession. The bride is behind the bridesmaids here, with the girls tossing rose pedals at her feet:

The bride escorted by her mother:

The ceremony began (nice setting, eh?)

They exchanged vows

Bored children played and dug in the sand and were not a distraction to anyone:

The kids tossed the remaining rose pedals from upwind after the ceremony (note we would’ve had an amazing photo if some bloody woman hadn’t stepped in front of Brenda just at that moment to get her own photo)

Then there was the normal clowning around while some photos were taken, here’s Don and me

And Brenda and me

And we all strolled over to a cliff area where there was a bit of shade and better light for the traditional family photos – of which we don’t have any as we were participating in them

Following the photos we deconstructed the site of the ceremony and took the gear back to the marquee for the reception slated to begin in some three hours…

because the bridge and groom et al were off having more photos taken (that’s them up on the cliff)

The guests lounged around drinking beer and wine and socializing and munching on appetizers. Some of the kids played at the beach and in the water.

Uncle Buzz (father of the groom and aged into his 70’s) even got into his togs and had a go in the canoe he built close to 40 years ago

And before you knew it, the grub was on – a wonderful buffet with lamb, beef, chook, potatoes, kumara, various veggies and bread etc. – and plenty for everybody.

Speeches were given, all heartfelt and clever (Best Man: “Women have many faults, men have only two, everything they say and everything they do.”) and the bride and groom needed to get a room:

But before that there was an interesting retrospective slide show presented on the roof of the marquee and they also had to perform the first dance, well choreographed and performed

The dance floor opened up and two of the aunties danced with the young’uns

And finally the aunties had a photo with niece Jessica standing in for Helen.

Still, it would have been a crap day (and if you’ve read the other blog entries from this trip you know why) but due to the wonderful weather, the beautiful ceremony and all the goodwill felt by all it’s impossible for anybody to label this a crap day. Not even close. Good on you, Geoff and Lisa.

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