08 August 2010

Mark and Jacque's Wedding

There is only one happiness in this life - to love and be loved."
- George Sand

August 1, 2010

The much anticipated day of Mark and Jacque's admittance to the world of the wedded, their momentous crossover from one status world to a higher, more responsible plane.
The Friday prior to the culminating event, our group, headed primarily by Christel, organized a bachelor slash bachelorette party for both the bride and the groom, but with the exclusion of hot sexy strippers, suggestive toys and outrageously orgasmic cakes. It was just a gathering of the couple's close peers and friends, some of which, came all the way from other parts of Asia, to wish the happy pair the best of luck as they enjoy their final days of freedom.

Quite a small party, it was held at the Astoria Plaza in Ortigas with a Gossip Girl theme dangling over our heads. Of course to stay true to the theme, everyone was requested to dress up as their favorite Gossip Girl character. Having not watched the series, I relied on my friends to direct me what to wear. Initially, I had wanted a Vanessa look, as her character intrigued me lots - but with my limited supply of boho clothes and accessories, I ended up going as a "Serena" wearing a dress bought all the way back from college.

The group prepared a selection of treats for the guests - macaroons c/o Tel, Delifrance finger foods (which I kinda pigged out on), and chips. We also had lasagna c/o Jacque's friends. Overall, everyone seemed to have had a good time, especially with Marj going around trying to make everyone drunk. I abstained from the alcohol mostly, as I was going to sing at the wedding and had to save the voice from any unwanted stress.

So below, is the photo of our almost complete group. As can be observed, the guys aren't really too keen on following the party theme.
The day of the wedding finally arrived. At 2 in the afternoon, the gang was already at the San Agustin Church in Intramuros. Everyone was dressed up, prim and proper, fully made up. Never have we fretted over our looks and fixed ourselves up this way since our prom days... which was, what, almost a decade back. Mark looked dashing - like a member of the Chinese mafia, we'd joke.

Marjorie was among the entourage, assigned the role of a secondary sponsor for the candles. Anne was one of the offerers. Christel and I didn't seem to have any major roles during the wedding ceremony.
I wasn't too keen whether the wedding commenced promptly, but what we recall most was the time when the big church doors opened to reveal a blushing, beautiful bride. Jacque looked absolutely beautiful, and it felt like we all held our breaths as she walked down the aisle accompanied by her parents.

We half-expected Mark to be teary-eyed, overwhelmed actually, by everything that was happening - but there he was, stalwart and happy with a semi-smirk lined upon his lips.

The wedding started and ended with none of the melodramatic objections, surprise twists or camera crew fails. It was a simple and generally straight forward gathering of families and friends sharing the exchange of eternal vows between two people in love.

Marjorie and Anne decided to drop by the house to freshen up prior to going to the reception. Also, to prepare our last minute surprise for the newly-weds.

Evening celebration was going to be held at the Crowne Plaza Galleria Manila at Ortigas Avenue, and I had to be there by 5.30 to speak with the host regarding my song number for the occasion. Their host was Eva Poon. Initially, we were all frightened by her, as she came across as forceful and exceedingly direct - but after managing to snag her for a few minutes to introduce myself, I understood her busy situation and believed that she was really a nice person stuck with a lot of work that had to be rushed.

As all good guests know and should know, there is nothing better that making sure the couple gets their money's worth when it comes to their photo booth investment. And we tried our very best to exploit it as well as we could. Mark and Jacque got Baicapture. Below are some of our group photographs.
The party, like the wedding, was simple - nothing exceedingly out of the ordinary that would make the event other worldly. None of those Lady Gaga look alike competitions, or Spocks' crashing in telling guests that the planet's under invasion, or zombies from the grave devouring pigeon brains out of its head - nah, none of those. But, I just did a song number (Lea Salonga's Two Words), and introduced the wonderful video presentation Christel did for the new Mister and Missus Tan - a compilation of the many pictures we've shared with the couple ever since the world began.

I even surprised myself many times as I felt high and crazed over minute details, or signs of affection shared between the couple. Not that those were all new to me, but because that was already the real deal. The contract had been signed. The mark had been made. There is no turning back.

That was surely the first time my zeal and glee had taken completely over me. Most of the time, I'd be apathetic of couples smooching with an endless five second count administered by a family member or friend - I'd be sympathetic even, to the poor pair that had to be put on the spot for everyone's entertainment. On this particular occasion, I was among the happy audience - hooraying at their orchestrated PDAs.

As the evening's merry making came to a close, and the friends gathered together - quite happy and content. Our exhilaration throughout the day was already wearing thin, and we all felt quite exhausted. Happy and exhausted. Wondering. When will be the next wedding? (Well, not really.)

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