It was 3:07 PM on my watch. I was feeling tense as I wait at the end of the aisle for my bride. I can only wait for what's going to happen from that moment on. Six months of preparation for the big day have come to an end. I am going to marry my girl friend for almost ten years - the woman who shook and changed my beliefs and dis-beliefs in love and marriage.
|The woman, my new adnventure-mate|
|just jumping for jubilation|
|ready or not...ready!|
I heard the guitar strums intro of Johnoy Danao's Ikaw at Ako. "This is it!", I said to myself. The new adventure was about to begin. I didn't imagine myself to come to this moment until I decided to propose to her to join me in this new adventure.
Then I saw my bride march down the short aisle. I don't know how to react. Everything during the wedding ceremony happened so fast. The few things I can remember were Fr. Roming's homily centered on us as an adventurous couple, our exchanges of personalized vows and when I kissed my bride after the priest gave the "go signal".
|The men, the good men|
|I dreamed of this moment before...|
|Isn't she lovely?|
Fr. Roming’s words still ring in my ears: “welcome to your new adventure, Louie! You won't be exploring mountains and landscapes on your own anymore like you did in your previous treks and trips. This marriage may be different from your usual adventure but it will certainly be the best you will ever take.”
That made me more excited. No drama. No tear jerky poses. The post-ceremony photo sessions ended and we hurried to the venue.
The tall door of the convention hall of Biarong Resto opened. All is blue! The venue was big enough to accommodate 250 guests or more. The stage were set up as planned - travel backpacks standing on the stage, outdoor-inspired decors and live wallpaper back drop of our Mt. Pulag adventure.
|Before the party. Photo by: Julz Mella|
|Nac, Nelle and Rhea, the pretty usherettes|
|This is it!|
|trynna hide the happy tension|
|Zoom to the center!|
Coldplay's Paradise remixed by Swedish House Mafia played as our usherettes dressed as flight attendants marched ahead of us. We followed the entrance march as the music sped up on the 30th second cue. Everything was blurry. I was on a high maybe...or a little nervous.
|to togetherness...in adventures!|
|Photo by: B. Ferrer|
As we approached the stage to bow down we saw the crowd...the guests that honored our invitation for the party were clapping their hands. The celebration went on and I saw fellow mountaineers at the back wearing the biggest of smiles among the guests. The rest were settled comfortably in their tables of choice with names of Southeast Asian and Philippines cities and mountains.
|Table labels. Photo by: B. Ferrer|
|Tall center decors and labels. Photo by: B. Ferrer|
|The overall mood of the party? The photo shows.|
While some guests were still photographing their passport-type invitations and plane ticket-type entrance passes, others were busy doing the wacky poses at the airplane back-dropped photo booth after dinner. Some guests were attaching their bagtag souvenir give-aways to their bag zippers.
|The photo booth|
|boarding pass as entrance/reservation tickets|
|Trying the photo booth with my best man and his girl|
|The take-away bagtag as souvenir. Photo by: Jorge Golle|
Our families, high school and college friends, colleagues and mates for craziness and adventures were all there donning their bluish dresses and tops. They're all still clapping and smiling.
Are they happy that I've finally decided to settle down? Are they happy that I finally have somebody to regulate my treks and trips? Are they glad that I won't go solo anymore and take risks into the unknown?
|Old friends that never grow old|
Whatever! My new adventure is here and I am holding the hands of the woman I am going to be with as adventure buddy in this long, and definitely exciting, lifetime trip.
I could not ask for more.
Meanwhile, Hanoi is waiting for our honeymoon. Gotta gear up again after the long hiatus from backpacking.
Feel free to Share the spirit of adventure!
Will post our adventure prenup video soon. ;)
Special Thanks to all those who helped make this celebration possible and fun:
Biarong Resto and Convention for the cool place. Job well-done for the themed decor
Nestor Espondulan of FixPoint Print Shop
Mr. Ronnie Ramos for the beautiful set up of flowers in the church and the venue.
The Usherettes/Flight stewardesses: Rhea, Acel Nacnac and Marnelle.
The Friends of Holon and Melibingoy (FHM) Mountaineers, Mai and Rivkah for a well-organized welcoming of guests.
Jazz Studio for the photos
Tudz, Bong and Von and Julz and Toto and Butch for more great photos.
Our Parents: Mama Femia, our major supporter, Mama Rose and Daddy Henry, and our brothers and sisters! You all rule!
Our relatives, ninongs and ninangs.
The Farm at Carpenter Hill - Hotel and Resto - the coolest place to stay in when in Koronadal City. Thanks for granting our special requests.