An American Wedding

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I’d hate to deceive my French readers, although I’d love to pretend that this was an absolutely typical American wedding.  I’m not saying that grannies with parasols are the quintessence of every American wedding, but there they were yesterday, saving their spot front and center in the desert wedding paradise,

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in case the sign didn’t do the trick.  Holding your own in the desert is a special skill, and that’s what this wedding was all about.

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American weddings usually do have music, and this one was no exception.  No choir, no organ, no soprano, just a lone guitar sweetening the dusty air.

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No one wore fancy shoes to this nuptial.  The road we walked to the wedding site was soft red dust and sand.  Even the bride didn’t dare arrive in her wedding dress

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but instead changed into her finery behind this little screen, trying not to drag her hem in the red earth.

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Like most American brides, she was walked down the aisle by her father.  Okay, it was an aisle in name only, more of a red carpet, really.

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The minister, sister of the bride, who had gotten herself ordained just for this occasion, awaited the bride and groom at what would have been the altar, if there had been an altar.

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The bride and groom’s beloved dogs were the ring-bearers, and the wedding vows included commitments to “love your dog as much as I love my dog.”

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The promises to have and to hold and to cherish were by turns serious

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beset by giggle fits, momentarily tearful, jubilant

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and passionate.  And then, the newlyweds eased back into their normal life

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doing all the things that come naturally to them, holding their own,

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while the desert prepared to sleep.

And now we board a slow American train for the two day trip back to our island.  There are no TGV’s here, nothing close, and we’ve stocked up on piles of books to read along the way, catching up with what’s happened in America while we were away.  Come along for the ride, it’s a beauty.

Explore posts in the same categories: French Letters Visits America

8 Comments on “An American Wedding”

  1. Margaret Says:

    Abra, the pictures are wonderful and your precis of the wedding was just great. Hang on to those photos. How super that you and Shel were there with your family. XXX

  2. Nice wedding pictures! Thanks for sharing.

  3. zuleme Says:

    we’ll be looking forward to those train photos.

  4. Kathy and John Says:

    When you catch up on the events in America you may be alarmed to hear about the dramatic fire in Santa Barbara. Our house is safe but we had a tense few days. We watched the events unfold from a safe distance (Eureka, CA) via the internet. We are now confident that we can continue our trip North, to see you, without worry for our house.

  5. Jessa Says:

    “The bride and groom’s beloved dogs were the ring-bearers, and the wedding vows included commitments to “love your dog as much as I love my dog.””

    That’s beautiful.

    My husband asked my cat and my dog, instead of my father, for permission to marry me. He cheated somewhat, by offering them chicken, and claiming that if they had refused the meat, it was a no. Not that they would have ever turned down free chicken.

  6. Barry Twyman Says:

    Our Pastor didn’t look as good as THAT !

  7. Robert White Says:

    My wife and I were married in January in the Valley of Fire near Las Vegas. I couldn’t help noticing how similar the as similar terraindesert scenery is in your photos.

    Can I ask where you were married? It looks very similar.

    We’re from Australia, which has terrain very alike to the USA in parts.

  8. Abra Bennett Says:

    Actually, this is our niece getting married, in the desert near Arches National Park, which is outside of Moab, Utah. It’s a shockingly beautiful landscape, and the first time I’d ever seen it.

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