Finally, after nearly two weeks of sightseeing in Japan, the real reason for Ryan and I being in the country was at last upon us.
Amazingly, our smart clothes that had journeyed with us still looked reasonably smart, which was a good thing considering the fact that in Japan, weddings are usually quite a smart affair.
The day had arrived. Longtime friend Terrance was to marry the girl of his dreams, Yuko.
We were ferried to Komagane from Ina by Yuko’s father, who we had now met a handful of times over the course of the last couple of days – a tricky venture considering the fact that he doesn’t have any English and we have no Japanese.
However, we made it to the hotel together with Hester and Terry (Terrance’s parents) with plenty of time to spare, and we were ushered to a room where we were to wait with any other arriving family before being allowed into another room where the two families would get to see Yuko and Terrance in their traditional wedding outfits and be introduced to one another.
The wedding ceremony itself was short and sweet, and hilariously, the first thing to go wrong on our entire Japanese trip went and happened at the ceremony itself – the lady priest forgot an important symbolic step of the ceremony!
Luckily she remembered it on the way out, and so the entire guest contingent was ushered to the outside courtyard where Yuko and Terrance once again made a grand appearance and completed their ceremony to the cheers of everyone there!
(And by cheers, I do of course mean strict silence, with jubilation strictly happening once the go ahead was given. Very, very disciplined the Japanese.)
Naturally, it was an absolutely awesome experience and such a privilege that Ryan and I could be there to witness Terrance and Yuko’s big day!
Of course, no wedding can be complete without a big reception (even if there isn’t really any dancing at a Japanese wedding), and we were seated down in a beautifully decorated room for a series of speeches and of course food.
Lots and lots of food – seven courses if I remember correctly!
(NOTE: Chantelle is absolutely furious that I took one single photo of all that interesting Japanese cuisine!)
(Also, Terrance had kindly seated Ryan and myself with some of his colleagues from one of the schools that he had previously taught at, meaning that two or three of the ladies had some English at their disposal, which in turn meant that some decent conversations were actually possible for a change!)
We had a lovely time at a lovely wedding for a lovely couple.
In other words, a better end to our two week long holiday in Japan we could not have asked for! :)