Jeanine and Brian's Wedding

Trip Start Feb 08, 2007
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Trip End Feb 12, 2007


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Flag of Virgin Islands US  ,
Saturday, February 10, 2007

Wedding Day
February 10, 2007 (Sat)

8:00AM Waking up to another glorious morning, I knew today was going to be a beautiful day for a beach wedding. We all had to be outside the hotel and depart by 9:30AM. Since Brian couldn't see the bride before the ceremony, he came to my room to get ready. His family soon arrived, and a flurry of last-minute details were double checked. This was actually the first wedding where I had to leave my Italian suit in the closet. Instead, I put on a short-sleeve white linen shirt, some shades, and sandals - all very casual and relaxing. Brian also had a similar ensemble while Amanda sported a blue sundress.

9:40AM We arrived at Magens Bay, with the sweeping view of lush mountains, turquoise water, and white sand greeting us on a tranquil Saturday morning. Also there to meet us was the wedding planner, Sheryl, originally from Delaware, whose bright, convivial smile was contagious. The beach was sparsely populated; once in a while, a jogger would run past us. But for the most part, the location was very secluded and private. Amanda went crazy taking pictures of bare-chested, athletic Caribbean men who happened to pass by us. While we were awaiting the arrival of the bride, the "Ambassador of Magens Beach," a corpulent Caucasian man whose midriff was exploding from his diminutive, under-sized swimwear, came by to congratulate and welcome us. He was born and raised in Magens Bay, and he claimed to be the ambassador of this area.

9:50AM Jeanine arrived. Radiant, sophisticated, elegant - she was exuding a graceful charm from her décolleté cream-white wedding dress complemented with white pearls in her hair. I never saw her so happy before. Her large smile was even more infectious than Sheryl's. While Erica, Brian's cousin, was helping her straighten out the sinuous wedding train, she seemed serene and well-composed. Brian, who purposely stood on the edge of the beach away from first sight of the bride, seemed also at peace and ready for the wedding to take place. The mid-morning sun was beginning to intensify, but the cool Caribbean tradewinds neutralized any heat in the air. In fact, everthing so far had been perfect, from the weather to the location, and now, to the ceremony underway.  

10:00 AM Holding a bouquet of glowing red and yellow flowers, Jeanine marched to stand by Brian's side on the beach. The turquoise waves were rhythmically lapping on the shore while seabirds hovered above as if to watch over us. I stood there, trying to soak in the ideal imagery of this beautiful ceremony. Flashbacks of all the other four recent weddings I had attended suddenly flashed before my eyes - I found myself briefly transported all at once to the 1,000 year-old small Italian church in Umbria in the gentle evening sunlight of early September, the majestic Baroque cathedral of Spain, the Hindu flower-laced mandap or wedding canopy in India, and the beautiful garden ceremony in Galveston. Blinking, I began to see Magens Bay again, and still standing and smiling were Jeanine and Brian. The ceremony continued with the ring exchange while curious onlookers strolled past us. In the end, it was a resplendent ceremony of a happy couple dressed in white with beaming smiles amid the sapphire water of a tropical beach.

Afternoon: After the ceremony, we returned to the van to head to the reception at Secret Harbour Resort on the east end of the island. Neslted in a quaint cove, the beach of Secret Harbour was alluring. We wined and dined at Blue Moon Cafe Restaurant, and once again, alcohol was flowing wildly. Too wildly for me, as I got somewhat inebriated even before lunchtime and spilled a glass of Bushwacker (rum, coffee liqueur, coconut, and cocoa) all over the reception table. Blame it on my cerebellar dysfunction. Oh well, maybe we could turn this into a dish-smashing, drink-spilling Greek wedding, I thought. The rest of the afternoon consisted of pure relaxation on the beach and swimming and snorkeling among iridescent tropical fish. This spectacular day ended with a breathtaking display of the Caribbean sunset - the waning, timid sun casting its last luminous reddish-orange blaze on the horizon before disappearing over the undulating waves. 
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