March 18th, 2012

A Sketchy Account Of Mike And Su-Young's Wedding

Mike's parents are British and American and his new wife is South Korean and so (as the Minister who is my first wife's partner pointed out in the wedding sermon) he's got family on three continents now- which means all of us who are related to him do as well. I think that's really cool- the way in which this little family has branched out and become multinational.

Su-Young's mother sent us gifts. What a sweet thing to do. Is that the Korean tradition? I need to find out. Mike and Su-Young told us a bit about the Korean ceremony. They wore traditional robes and appeared before a priest of some sort (Buddhist I guess) and Su-Young was reprimanded every time she raised her eyes from the ground. At some point (during the cermony or before it ( I'm not sure which) Mike had to prostrate himself- quite literally, forehead in the dust- in front of Su-Young's father. 

The British ceremony took place in The Methodist Church in King's Heath, Birmingham. It's very grand for a Methodist church. It has a spire and a rose window. We helped decorate it in the morning- which is why we had two little orange trees living in our car overnight. It was a wedding blessing not a wedding because the wedding proper (which was nothing but a signing of papers in some Japanese government office) had already taken place. I read 1 Corinthians 13, Alice read a passage from Kahlil Gibran ("let there be spaces in your togetherness") and Joe read a letter from the grandparents in Kentucky. When it came to "honouring" Mike with her body Su-Young got the giggles.

The reception was at the Diaconal Centre which my first wife's partner runs. I had it in my head that Methodists disapprove of alcohol;  I was wrong. I was also wrong about Methodists and fart jokes; seems they can't get enough of them. Joe gave a cracking best man's speech (full of fart jokes). I always said when he was a kid that he had career in stand-up waiting for him if he wanted it. He still does.  My younger son is reet Bolton. Think Peter Kay, only spikier.

We stayed at the Travel Lodge at Maypole. All my family from down south stayed there too. Ailz's family travelled down for the day. It was amazing having all of them there together. I've never been at a wedding before where I knew over 75% of the guests. If there were fights they happened when I wasn't looking.

Someone asked me if I was proud and I said "yes" automatically because it was the expected answer. I've thought about it properly since. And yes, I am proud. Proud of Mike and Su-Young and proud of my family- all of 'em- my lot and Ailz's lot.  Damn proud!