This was the payoff of the trip – to get an watch two friends get married. It’s always a little chancy when you go to a wedding. There are weddings and there are WEDDINGS. This was the latter.
The wedding and reception were held at a restaurant/caterer located within a very nice office park – Villa Christina.
Jeff and Lauren got married under cover, though outside. The guests sat in chairs on the lawn. It was breezy and chilly, but it was raining where Jeff grew up and snowing where Lauren grew up. Breezy and chilly was good.
The first good sign was when I overheard the usher tell another guest there was no side for the bride or groom – anyone could sit anywhere. I found a seat in the back, but on the aisle. I wanted to take pictures.
It was a very informal ceremony, performed by a very folksy reverend. A few times, when appropriate, Jeff made comments to the crowd. There was lots of crying… good crying.
I was very impressed when Lauren’s grandmother came up to the mike and recited a very sweet poem, from memory. It was a nice touch, as was Lauren’s sister’s singing.
If I’ve ever been to a wedding with more good looking women, I don’t remember it. Yet I still desperately missed Helaine. I think I would have had even more fun sharing this time with her. It really was contagious.
After the ceremony there were appetizers and an open bar. I managed to get some food on my suit. Maybe it was better Helaine wasn’t here after all.
Dinner was in the ballroom upstairs. The food was very good and the ambiance continued to be great. I was assigned Table 5 and ended up with a bunch of people from The Weather Channel, including Jim Cantore, their best known on-camera meteorologist.
Before I wrap this up, I have to relate one story which goes to the general mood of the evening. There were two still photographers at the affair, one shooting Nikon and the other Canon. Both had nice pro level cameras and lenses.
I tried to be out of the way as they shot. After all, they were there to document this for Jeff and Lauren and though I’d be shooting away, they take precedence. A few times during the evening we chatted, and they were friendly.
All was fine, until my battery went. I had taken over 120 shots at the time, and though I was surprised it went, I shouldn’t have been… and should have brought a second battery with me.
The Canon photog, seeing my plight, offered me a spare battery! These are special batteries made just for these cameras.
I told him I didn’t want to have him take a risk, but he insisted as he knew I’d want to shoot the bride and groom as they made their entrance.
I took my shots and then, guilt ridden, brought the battery back to him with thanks. A few minutes later he was back, with his charger. A half hour later, I was all set with a charged battery.
This guy was great. This was a selfless move by someone who cared enough to see I was having a good time.