Our Love Story – Chapter Ten

As is the case in all weddings, the months of planning culminated in a beautiful ceremony that was over in less than 45 minutes. Just like that. Being a California girl, I had always wanted to get married barefoot on the beach, but the logistics of it all made it seem too impractical. The best wedding spot was in a secluded cove at Corona del Mar, but it required some climbing over rocks to get there, which was not the way to treat older guests. And, it only seemed right that “holy matrimony” should take place in a church.

The other plus to a church wedding was getting to see Flyboy in his dress uniform, which I had first enjoyed at the banquet following his pilot training graduation. He was absolutely yummy and when I saw him waiting for me at the front of the church, all doubt disappeared and I was confident that he was the one for me. I think I was the only one who didn’t cry and I was as calm as I’d ever been.

Roommate, the best man, pretended my ring was stuck on his pinkie when it came time to hand it over. He didn’t fool anyone, and quickly relinquished it. Flyboy gave me a vision of our future together when he extemporaneously preached a mini-sermon during our exchange of vows. We had each written our own vows and had memorized them so as not to have to “repeat after me”. Roommate had the cue card in case Flyboy forgot something, and having heard the vows at the rehearsal, I had a pretty good idea of what was supposed to come next. Roommate looked at the card and then at Flyboy and then back at the card again. Flyboy was winging it, and it was all good stuff, and years later I looked back on that moment and realized I should have seen it coming. Flyboy may have started out as a pilot, but he would one day wind up in the pulpit. It was inevitable.

Before we knew it, we were husband and wife, and we were being enveloped in hugs from the people who loved us most. Flyboy, who never thought he could trust a woman enough to fall in love was shedding tears of wonder and disbelief, and I was beaming.

And a few short hours later, we were off! The groomsmen had stuffed the back seat of the getaway car with balloons, so in my first bossy wife command, I ordered, “Get in the front seat! I’ll sit on your lap!” Roommate was driving, so Flyboy obediently jumped into the passenger seat of my parent’s Datsun, and I (dress and all) climbed in on top of him. I had not accounted for the fact that the car would not start without the seatbelt being fastened, so more finagling was required before we could take off. We headed back to the house to change clothes, get our suitcases and travel an hour to the L.A. Marriott, where we would spend our honeymoon night before flying out the next morning.

As we drove down the freeway, the wedding party tailed us for a good ten minutes…just long enough for us to wonder if they would ever turn around and head back. We got to the Marriott around 10:30, and as we pulled up to the front door in our decorated car, no one had to wonder why we were there. The valet began unloading our suitcases from the trunk and out fell Flyboy’s chest expander – a piece of exercise equipment that looks like an oversized spring with handles. As the valet picked it up off the ground and held it for the small crowd waiting for the airport shuttle to see they broke into laughter, followed by applause. Flyboy turned bright red and I rolled my eyes…and that’s how it all began.

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