Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Weddings: Mexican Style

Wowzers!  Mexican weddings should be on EVERYBODY'S bucket list!  I just came back from the most beautiful, heart-warming, uplifting and just simply amazing wedding!  Friends of mine were married in Guanajuato, the very heart of the country.  They were married on the Feast of the Immaculate Heart after starting the celebrations the day before on the Feast of the Sacred Heart.  Can you say "I love you" in a bigger way??  I think not!

So my friends and I met up on Friday at the hotel before heading downtown.  We had Mass in a beautiful church with the bride and groom before heading outside to a gorgeous little park full of fountains, trees and lights.  A troupe of musicians met us and handed out small flasks of tequila.  Can you see where this is going?  

We walked the streets for hours, singing, laughing and playing word games.  The bride and groom strolled arm in arm among us, chatting and laughing, snapping pictures as the sun set.  We finally ended up at the city center and broke into small groups for dinner.  I think we must have filled all the restaurants in a four block radius.

The next morning we were up and enjoying a beautiful breakfast spread before heading into the city for a little sightseeing.  We took a ride up the funicular to see the town from the top of a mountain. Certainly worth it (see pic at the top)!  And then did a little shopping before grabbing tacos and heading back to our hotel to start preparing for the wedding.  

(This is a local hero at the top of the mountain.) Then I did something I have NEVER done before: had my makeup and hair done professionally!  

The salon set up in the hotel conference room and eight very talented ladies spent the next four hours working us over.  We all stepped away looking like movie stars!

After a rush to make it to the cathedral, we arrived in time to see the groom escort his mother down the aisle and then the father of the bride escort his daughter.  She was breathtaking!  Joy and love radiated from both the bride and the groom's face and filled everyone watching with happiness. 

The wedding itself lasted two hours.  There were no bridesmaids or groomsmen.  Certain customs were new to me, like tying a lasso around the couple and handing them a small treasure box.  The priests saying the Mass knew the couple personally and told us stories about their courtship and love.  It was clear to see that God had led these two together amidst all good things!

After the wedding we boarded buses to the reception. We walked down a long staircase and greeted the newly-wedded couple at the bottom before being escorted to a ginormous area beautifully set up with gardenias, carnations and roses accompanied by live music...the male singer seriously sounded like every famous person he imitated. We were served drinks at our table while we waited for the bride and groom to appear.  When they did come, they made their way to the front table amidst cheers and then sat down with their parents, siblings and sibling's spouses.  I loved that they sat with their family and not at a table by themselves or with just the bridal party.

We finally finished our multi-course dinner at 11:30.  Then the dancing shoes came out!  Literally!  The bride gifted all the women with dancing slippers!

And boy can Mexicans dance...for like a really long time!  After making us all cry with the father-daughter dance, the bride made us all laugh with her brothers-sister dance and eventually tear up again as she danced with her new husband for the first time.  Then they opened the dance floor (lit up and changing colors from beneath!) to everyone and we all got in on the action.  Then around FIVE AM the party broke up...yes, I said 5AM!  Like I said, Mexicans can party!

The next day I was up for Mass at the crack of dawn, okay 8am...and then went to a mummy museum.  That's a different story!  After shopping and a late lunch, I headed back and holed up in my hotel room as all my friends left on an earlier flight.  Around six I headed for the airport only to find the bride and groom on my plane!  And I was reminded how precious this couple truly is.  God has filled my life with the most beautiful and amazing people.  Blessed and grateful.  And loved.

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