This weekend I was fortunate enough to be invited to a friend’s wedding in Warsaw, Poland.
I traveled there with Nut because the groom, Mr S, was our mutual friend. In fact I consider Mr S as a little brother of mine.
We booked flights from Stanstead on Ryanair.
This was a huge mistake! Stanstead is a horrible airport with insufficient seating, cold floors and a special kind of griminess.
Ryanair sucks big time. Our return flight was delayed by 3 hours because our plane had a fault and the replacement plane had to wait for a replacement crew. Apparently the crew on the first plane must have disintegrated into thin air.
However the weekend, travel notwithstanding, was an amazing affair. The hotel was stunning, the service and grounds were delightful. As I walked in thorough the lobby I knew that this was going to be a wonderful wedding!
We arrived on Friday morning then rested for a few hours before going down to the lobby and bumping into so many familiar faces. We booked and shared a cab with friends and their children and headed into the old town. There we bumped into other friends and the eight of us lunched together. We then strolled around before taking in a horse and carriage ride and visited local shops.
The groom sent a text around 7pm to say he and the groomsmen would be in an African restaurant and that anyone in town should come and join them for a drink. So we jumped in to our taxi (we had hired I’m for the day for a very reasonable £60) and headed over there.
There were so many people to catch up with and chat to but we had already arrange to meet my brother and cousin, their wives and other friends at the hotel bar at 9pm so we had a quick mojito and jumped back in the cab.
After freshening up at the hotel we headed down to the bar where about 30 wedding guests were gathered to mingle and get to know each other. So many lovely, positive and beautiful people in a small place were simply joyous. The groomsmen were all handsome and energetic (one or two were quite delectable too!).
When I first entered a little person ran up to me and wrapped herself around my thighs………………my heart burst when I bent down to scoop up my niece that I haven’t seen in the flesh since Christmas (she lives in Oslo).
Cuddle of all cuddles!
We sat and mingled by the bar, laughing and chatting as the groom moved round the room. You could see his anxiousness. He wanted a last minute groomsmen meeting but I don’t think that much was achieved.
The next morning when I entered the breakfast hall I was blown away by the number of people I recognised as wedding guests. All the children running around. So many catch up stories were exchanged, so many jokes were told. I laughed so hard over breakfast that I was doubled over holding my stomach together!
I dragged myself away from the breakfast hall for a rest before getting dressed for the coach ride into Warsaw for the church ceremony. I ended up on the ‘adults no kids’ coach where the conversation flowed freely and friendships were formed.
The church as a circular catholic church with white washed walls and stained glass window. It had a wonderful mezzanine level and a great glass domed ceiling. The bride floated down the aisle as one of the bridesmaids sang Ave Maria. Her dress was an amazing ivory/gold colour and she held herself regally.
The ceremony was conducted in English with everything repeated in polish. We sang traditional hymns. Rock of ages was the first; one of my favorites. Everything was perfect.
The coach ride back to the hotel seems to go in a flash and we were met in the hotel lobby by trays of canapés and glasses of champagne.
The reception hall was huge and had soft pink glow of lighting. I found out later in the evening the bride had actually designed the lighting for the hotel and we were sitting beneath her very own concept brought to light!
My brother Mr M compared the event alongside a chap who translated into Polish. He was his usual funny self and did justice to his role. I know the night before he was nervous and really concerned about getting it right for his dear friend. I think he did.
Apart from a DJ hiccup the night was perfect. The whole event was an exercise in taste and elegance.
We danced; we laughed, ate gorgeous food and were in such good company.
This weekend a large group of people came to see love
The love of a man and a woman coming to final commitment of marriage
But through their love I witnessed love on so many other levels too
The deep love of true friendship.
Friends pulled together to make their day as perfect as possible. They embraced people that they had not seen for ages. There was such joy about being together again.
The love of family
Family members who came together to support the couple. Family members embracing the kin they haven’t seen for a while.
The love of openness
The openness of meeting new people, discovering new places. of letting go of lifes stress and having fun!
By bringing us together for their union Mr & Mrs S did more than invite us to witness their day. They gave us a gift of a treasured memory, the gift of moments of pure happiness and joy.
They reminded me that love is possible and present. They left me hopeful that one day I too might find a love of my own.
They reminded me love is real
This weekend I witnessed love in action.
And I am grateful.