Weekend in Review (21-23 December) My Life 24 DEC 2007

WeddingFriday pretty much started out like most of the days this week. Get up, eat breakfast, watch anime, do some blog writing, play games and do some household chores. I did however have the added bonus of having to go out and pick up both me and my dad’s hired suits, which I then used as an excuse to pop in at mom’s place (who was feverishly icing cup cakes for Claire’s wedding) and employed Ryan’s aid in washing my car – twice.

We also squeezed in two games of NBA Jam, but the less said of those the better :)

The rest of the afternoon was spent shopping for the ingredients for Chantelle’s lasagna and goofing off here at home. Had a pleasant surprise when Ryan swung by the flat thanks to him needing to come out this way to grab his package from the post office, and we ended up spending most of the afternoon behind the trusty PS2 controllers grinding out draw after draw in FIFA 08. Well, it was a pretty goalless afternoon, but he did eventually manage to pip me at the finish line, scoring two goals in the 90th minute to seal the series win.

Chantelle eventually arrived home, a little later than originally planned, and set about whipping up a giant lasagna that was to serve as supper for the evening. As it was, the plan was for her to make the supper and then take it over to Malcolm and Andri where we enjoyed a nice evening of Champagne, food and Noot vir Noot. For a change little Corben was already fast asleep, so we could spend some time in their company without any distractions!

We finished up there just after 22:00 and then zipped off to Tygervalley to get us two seats to Enchanted, Walt Disney’s latest family movie creation which turned out not too bad in the end (in a silly romantic comedy sort of way), but did take a surprisingly large slice out of the rest of the evening. Oh well, it was just great to go and see a movie with Chantelle again – the last one we went to see was in fact Stardust, way back in mid October already!

Saturday morning and afternoon were in the end almost a blur as the entire day consisted of getting prepped for Claire and Riley’s wedding later the day. From getting haircuts at dodgy salons in Brackenfell (okay, only outside of the place was seedy, the inside was surprisingly not bad), going for a quickfire shopping trip to Tygervalley, to tying my fingers in knots trying to lace up Chantelle’s gorgeous evening dress, the first half of Saturday literally flew by!

Although in all honesty, perhaps it would be more accurate to say I spent most of the day staying out from under Chantelle’s feet – boy do women have a lot of preparations to go through in order to get ready for a wedding! In my case it was literally a matter of pulling on my suit and putting on my tie 5 minutes before we left… :)

But with all that said, I must just stand up and say that my bokkie looked absolutely radiant after all the sweat and tears were said and done! Stunningly attired in a drop dead gorgeous brown evening dress, complete with high heels and the works, Chantelle was indeed a sight to behold. Beautiful, elegant and absolutely gorgeous, to me Chantelle definitely stole the show! Okay, Claire looked gorgeous as well, but I’ll leave those pretty words for Riley to take care of!

We managed to find the venue in Zevenwacht without too much incident despite the fact that Zevenwacht cleverly tried to derail us by organizing a second wedding party close by. Guided by the enormous Bedouin tent however, we eventually made our way down to the wedding venue, a splendid grass embankment along a beautiful expanse of water, complete with its own duck-driven ecosystem (which Riley kept having to prod along with his mafiosa style long-toed shoes).

Delayed thanks to a small hiccup regarding a missing wheelchair for Riley’s granddad, Claire finally made her shining experience, a very proud Pops in tow. As they made their way down the aisle, you could hear everyone gasp and murmour at just how beautiful Claire was on this, her most special day ever. Clad in a simple, drop dead gorgeous white wedding dress, Claire took her leave of dad and went to stand next to a very grinning Riley (who was just as elegantly attired as Claire – just without the train and veil of course).

Our pastor Andre gave a nice ceremony in which Claire and Riley shared their own written vows, a wonderful touch that made the ceremony just that more special. Shame, I don’t think there was a single family member there who didn’t feel a tinge of pride the moment Riley got to kiss the bride.

Honestly, it is a strange feeling to think of Claire as a married woman now, but I can’t lie – I am really, really overjoyed for her sake and both Chantelle and I wish them the utmost best for the future and all that it holds!

From there the real party got started as everyone was (eventually – damn photos take forever you know) herded into the beautifully decorated reception hall. The hall had been decked out with the most gorgeous of d’cor available, elegant white combined with stunning glass and flower arrangements. Each table looked like a masterpiece, so much so that one almost felt a little too much in awe to actually sit down and move things around! Though not Chantelle it would seem, as she promptly managed to spill the pebbles out of the gift Cacti that was intended for each guest on the evening over our table. And naturally she promptly switched name plates to make it seem as if I was the culprit! Grrr’.

We were seated with a host of family members, cousins I haven’t seen since the last funeral (which is basically the only time we ever make an effort to get together) and it turned out to be loads of fun, with old Willie and Zan entertaining us for a good part of the evening. Ryan looked like he had stepped straight out of Hitman, a look that garnered a lot of comments from my side of course!

Though, I would soon be on the back foot, shot straight through the heart by an absolute low blow delivered by Pops in his very entertaining and heartwarming speech! Riley’s best men also delivered some entertaining speeches before it was time to dig into one heck of a delicious main course buffet. A generous spread of meats, starches and salads, I’m pretty sure there isn’t anyone who could have possibly complained about the evening’s meal. Dessert was some scrumptious malva pudding decked with custard and a side of overly sweet (which makes it delicious and edible in my opinion) mousse. Apparently no one really liked the mousse in the end, as I ended up polishing off mine, Chantelle’s and mom’s all in one go!

Of course what would the perfect wedding be without a copious amount of dancing, something upon which Claire and Riley delivered with a scintillatingly hot opening dance number. Obviously their dance lessons had paid off, because Riley didn’t seem to put a foot wrong – but that could be because no one was actually watching him. I think all eyes were firmly fixed on Claire’s stunning evening dress for the occasion!

Not that we were going to let them have all the fun of course. Chantelle and I were soon tearing up the dance floor (to much comedic effect I’m told – by Chantelle naturally. And about everyone else that saw me). The hired DJ outfit of Rhythm Divine kept us entertained with all the classics and everyone literally danced the night away.

The cash bar was in full swing, Riley and Claire’s getaway car was properly trashed, and everyone seemed to have an absolute ball of a time at what can only be described as literally – the perfect wedding. I think both Riley and Claire can really be proud on the spectacle they put on and my heartfelt congratulations go out to both of them!

If you are still really this extra long post by now, you can be thankful to know that Sunday’s roundup is nice and short …n sweet. Thanks to the fact we got to bed extra late both Friday and Saturday evening, Chantelle and I basically lazed the whole Sunday away, in fact, only emerging from the flat around 16:00!

A quick Santa Clause drop-off visit to Monty and the gang, followed by an excruciating trip to a jam-packed Canal Walk (which served to remind us just how clever we had been to do all our Christmas shopping already) brought Sunday to a near close, which we ended off on a high note with a fun visit to Mom and Pops in which we did our best to polish off as many of the leftover wedding cupcakes as possible!

Home at last it didn’t take more than 10 minutes to get into bed and start sawing those logs! Ah, yet another successfully busy weekend for the books :)

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About Craig Lotter

South African software architect and developer at Touchwork. Husband to a cupcake baker and father to two little girls. I don't have time for myself any more.