Island Living has many challenges and many benefits. This weekend is another example of an island life benefit. We are invited to a wedding in the Philippines by the beach!
The other day, we had an unexpected visitor drop by. A friendly neighbor and a young lady whom we did not know... and they had something to ask us. "Would you mind coming to this young lady's wedding? Oh, and we want you to be her God Parents." Wanting to be good neighbors in the community, we said, "Sure, we'll be there".
Today is the wedding day, and as luck would have it, we are in the midst of a typhoon. Lots of rain, wind, and no electricity.
The wedding starts at 9am, and it's now 815am... and Rose and I are just waking up. We quickly get dressed, grab a fresh banana and dash to the car in the pouring rain. As we exit the driveway, we see a small parade of neighbors starting their 3 mile trek to the church - they are going to the wedding too. "Would you like a ride to the church?" Of course they say 'Yes', and we begin packing 9 more people into our 5 passenger Mitsubishi. Nobody complains. In fact, everyone is laughing, and happy not to be walking in the pouring rain. I smile and realize this is one of those enjoyable Filipino moments, where people are happy to be helping other people.
As the ceremony is about to ceremony is about to begin, we arrive laughing and quickly unload into the church to avoid the torrential rain. Entering the church, we discover that it's not only us trying to avoid the rain, but it's also birds, cats, dogs, and lizards. Life in the tropics. Fortunately no one is bothered by the additional attendees.
The wedding planner gives us our instructions as the music begins - acoustic guitars and wonderful Filipino voices. This music sounds so good that I would have just came to enjoy the production.
We file up the aisle and into our seats. My favorite part of this procession is watching the tiny flower girls dropping tropical flower petals in their wake. It's super cute.
Obviously the bride and groom are supposed to be the focal point... but I'm easily distracted by the flying birds, the roving dogs that are sniffing around, and the flower girls starting a flower fight with the ring barers. I enjoy the moment of wedding ceremony irony.
My attention is refocused as I hear, "You may kiss the bride!" It was an awkward moment for the couple but they eventually kiss (and I wonder if it was their first kiss ever).
To the reception
And the typhoon is raging as we scurry under an awning for the reception. Waves are crashing, coconuts are falling from the trees, and people are still smiling and enjoying the moment.
And the microphone is put in my hand. I am told I am to make an impromptu speech. Ugh, think quick!
"Today we are witnessing: Raging wind, Crashing waves, Drenching rain. It's symbolic of challenges that a couple can face during a marriage. The other thing we are witnessing is faith that the challenges will only be temporary, and that good weather is only a day away. This is true in relationships. We must have faith to carry us throw the bad times. We must have perseverance to help us weather these storms. We must appreciate our community to help support and encourage us to do the right thing.
And the right thing to do now is for everyone to raise their glasses and make a toast to this Happy and Loving couple."
I don't know what I just said, but at least I am sipping wine on the beach with the love of my life - my wife Rose.
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written by Greg Pasden
World Traveler, Coffee Entrepreneur
Best Selling Author
, coffee news, tags: Island Life, island wedding, philippines wedding, filipino wedding, typhoon in the philippines, beach life, beach wedding, expat life
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Enjoy the Hilarious Adventures of my Move to the Philippines
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