So many of my friends got married this summer. Every other week since June, there’s been a wedding and not like boring weddings, either. There’s been an Indian wedding, a Native wedding and a Gay wedding (not that gay weddings are any different than the regular weddings but in my experience, they are way cooler).
The Indian wedding was the first time I’ve seen a traditional Indian ceremony. I gladly took on the role of coordinator as a gift to my friends, which meant I got the full behind-the-scenes experience of how much work it takes to set up such an event. There was the assembly of the mandap, the preparation of ceremony snacks (samosas, mmmm) and managing the turnover from ceremony to reception. I feel like this word gets used too much when describing weddings, but it was magical. The parents of the bride sang a traditional Indian song, the best friend of the bride covered Royal Wood’s “I’m So Glad” and the bride and groom (with some buddies for back-up) performed Bahama’s “Lost in the Light”. The venue was St. Lawrence Hall‘s enormous, gas-lit ballroom.
Like I said, magical.
The Native wedding was held up north near Sault Ste. Marie. So quite the trek from Toronto. We made it to Thessalon for the Friday night where we had rented an Airbnb (Chauncey Gardens, to be exact). It had a swimming pool, extensive grounds and a (probably haunted) attic. Our excitement got the better of us and we stayed up way too late that night, singing and swimming. The next day we drove the rest of the way to Camp Wakonda, where we were assigned a bunk house, summer camp styles. The ceremony took place on the lawn, next to a huge dinner and dancing tent. The bride and groom are both Ojibway (Anishinaabe, to be exact) so the ceremony had some very cool traditional elements, including a smudging and a pow-wow style round dance. So much appreciation was given to “creation” and with McCarroll Lake as the backdrop, you got the feeling that all of nature was in on the celebration. Highlight: The late night bonfire and next morning lake dip.
Finally, my friends Joey and Jamie got married this past Saturday in Toronto at the Berkeley Fieldhouse. It was my first time at the venue and I’m still trying to figure out how I can arrange to party there at least two more times before the summer lets out. There’s a huge deck, couches and benches tucked away behind leafy corners and even an air-conditioned tree house. The ceremony was the shortest, but sweetest and you just felt how much everyone there loved the both of them. It was that energy (I think that’s the only way to explain it) that propelled us to dance for hours and stay up much, much too late, in celebration.
At the end of the night of the last wedding, one of my friends lamented that we didn’t have any more reasons to get dressed up and party together. As exhausting as weddings are, they brought out the best in all of us, I think we are all a little more in love with each other for it.