I went to a really special wedding a week and a half ago. Mandy's sister, Mollie, married a nice man named Cristian at the Knox residence just outside of Milwaukee. We were all a little worried because the day before the wedding, the temperature hit a muggy 100°F, which clearly would have been painful for an outdoor ceremony and reception. Luckily, a thunderstorm rolled in that evening, and the next day turned out to be relatively cool -- and absolutely gorgeous. [see all photos] (contact me for password)
Because I used to play in an amateur string quartet, I've probably been to a hundred or more weddings. This one was probably my favorite -- everything was perfect, and even though I haven't spent much time with Mollie in the past, Mandy, her family, and family friends radiated warmth and familiarity in a way that made me feel at home. The Knoxes all but welcomed us as family. Congratulations, Mollie and Cris!
And, of course, Elliot, Dan, and Victor were at the wedding. We roamed around as a foursome, each happier than the next at our good fortune of being reunited periodically by weddings.
A story, before I shut my trap:
On our way out of the Four Points Sheraton one day, we noticed that there were wedding "pails" behind the front desk. Mandy had told us that she was going to leave us something, so we approached the desk and identified ourselves as Knox Wedding Attendees. Attached to one of the pails was a sticky with the words, "Knox Wedding" on it. And so, we were given our pails, which each contained a welcome letter, maps, bottled water, and soap (for the one girl, and for Victor ;). But since we were on our way out, we took a map and bottle of water from one of the pails and asked the receptionist to hold the rest of the stuff behind the counter for us until we returned. Piece of cake, right?
In the evening, we returned, to find a balding man with thick eyebrows behind the counter. He was suspicious before we even got to him.
> Knox Wedding Attendees: "Hello, we're here for the Knox wedding, and would like to pick up our pails, which we left here earlier." (we point to the pails, which are sitting on the table behind the counter).
> William: "Uh... what rooms are you in?"
> (we give him the room numbers)
> William: "What are your names?"
> (we give him our names)
> Knox Wedding Attendees: "We already picked them up, earlier."
> William: "I'm sorry -- I don't see any mention of a wedding in your records."
> Victor: "I booked the room and got the special rate for the Knox Wedding."
> Knox Wedding Attendees: "Um, look at the pails. Turn ... that one (we point)... around. It says, 'Knox Wedding' on the back of it!"
> William: (stalls.. not sure what to do. walks over to the pail and verifies that it says, 'Knox Wedding' behind it.) "Hmmm..."
> Knox Wedding Attendees: "Look... William, we have the missing water bottle -- the one that's missing from that pail. And if you open up that rolled up piece of paper, you'll see a letter, and some maps! We even have the missing map!"
> William: (quiet, but unwilling to give us the pails. no eye contact)
> Us: "This is ridiculous. We *had* the pails earlier today!"
> William: (no eye contact. still unwilling to give us the pails.)
At this point, Elliot and Victor had backed into the elevator lobby because they are non-confrontational. Dan, however, had decided that he wanted the pails -- tonight -- and was explaining to the security guard that this was all really ridiculous. The arguing continued for several more minutes, but in the end, we failed to get the pails from William. I did. however, take a bunch of pictures of William so that we could remember him in his entirety.
The next morning, we walked downstairs and asked the new staff for the pails, which they promptly gave us.