Wednesday, December 19, 2018

The Wedding part 2

Well, I can't really show you photos of the wedding here. The Minister of the church had conducted a blessing of the animals in the church, where people bring their pets to be blessed. Tradie Brother wanted so much for his dog to attend the wedding, and he did. The Minister had no problem with a dog in church.

Now, have you made false assumptions as I did? The Minister of the church is a married woman. It was the first same sex marriage in her church. She has in the past been very gay friendly towards the local community. I spoke to her briefly afterwards, telling her who I was and that I had been in same sex relationship for a number of years. How long, she asked? Ok, you know all about the battles for same sex rights, and the step back at the height of the AIDS crisis. Indeed I do know. I pointed out to her that I haven't been a great gay activist, but at times in my own way got stuck in. The church website is quite impressive.

She said that she owes a lot to the women before her who made it possible for her to be in the position she is now.

She conducted the marriage ceremony beautifully. There was a little religion in the ceremony but nothing too much to spook the non believers. Mother complained about the welcome to country beginning, a standard tribute to the Aboriginal custodians of the land before we white fellas came. Standard practice now Mother, I told her, live with it.

The MC was Sister's straight female friend, who chose her wedding dress. She was great. Another good friend of Sister's and part of the bridal party spoke and she must be Catholic and I am afraid what she said in a religious context rather went over my head.

Little Jo spoke about Sister's and Bone Doctor's first marriage in Canberra, five years to the day earlier. They were the last couple to be married in the ACT.  It was quickly outlawed by the Federal Government and their marriage annulled by the nasty John Howard. Little Jo wrongly said it was Tony Abbott, a later former Prime Minister, which did bring boos and hisses of support from those present. I didn't know at the time, but it was an unrehearsed speech.

Rings were exchanged, vows to love, respect etc were taken, without mention of obeying. (Bone Doctor knows better than to not obey Sister) You may kiss the bride. I now pronounce you as a married couple. Cheers rang out.

Then there was signing of the official documents. Who are those people up there? Ah, Little Jo's bio donor father and his wife.

As I have said, they have lots of friends who do things for them for cheap rates. A decent mention was made in the service about what Sister and Bone Doctor do for the local community. If you remember, Mother complained about them never being home when she stayed there. That is one of the reasons. A group of scouts was in attendance for part of the service, no doubt Bone Doctor's troop.

Sister thought it fit to invite our late Step Father's daughter and her husband. They are probably in their sixties, and while it was a bit hard for them as they knew few people, I think they liked that they came. He is a farmer and bigwig in peak farming organisations, so I think it it is safe to conclude that they would be on the conservative side of social matters and politics, yet the country farmers were at a same sex wedding. Bone Doctor's family did not bat an eyelid at the same sex wedding. I hope it was because they are tolerant, rather than just not caring. Bone Doctor's Uncle spoke about how sports competitive Bone Doctor is. At some point in his life he realised she could beat him in rugby. Her Father asked how many people had seen Bone Doctor in a dress, and more hands than he expected went up, including ours. We saw her in a clingy dress and with her slim but still feminine figure, she looked terrific, perhaps like a 1920s flapper. She went to a conservative posh private girls school for her secondary education. She was incensed that she could not wear trousers at school and soon had that policy of girls having to wearing dresses changed. While she was not welcome at Australian Rules Football, she realised there were no female restrictions at rugby, so that is what she played.

Sister put up a video clip on FB today. Most of the first part of Little Jo's performance was cut out. I expect that was because she scratched her crotch three times, that I noticed. It was very distracting from a fine performance. After Little Jo started, a tenor cut in (quite an attractive bloke in a nerdish kind of way) and as Little Jo stopped, then he stopped and a soprano, who is the adult daughter of Little Jo's bio father sang. Then it went to all of them singing together. It was magical. Many have recorded the song but I believe the sublime original was by The Carpenters.


After the signing of documents, where there had been complete silence aside from a little gurgle from one of the twins, suddenly music burst forth from the speakers and all 80 of us clapped, laughed and cheered as Sister and Bone Doctor danced down the aisle, with Sister singing along at the top of her voice to this track. Gosh it was a great wind up to the wedding ceremony.


Afterwards there was a terrific serving of nibbles and drinks, and boy did I need a drink. Then the main meal buffet, all good. A live guitarist performed who was really good. There was much dancing and frivolity. R took Step Mother back to the cottage and returned but it was then wind up time at 10pm, although things certainly weren't shutting down. One interesting thing happened that I did not understand until later, Sister served Bone Doctor a morsel of wedding cake on a long knife. People were calling out no, but it went ahead. I guess it is an ultimate act of trust.

We left and spent the next two hours outside back at the cottage with a bottle of Scotch while we sorted out the world and our lives. Neither is any better for our efforts, but that is what we do. Bed by midnight and I did not wake until 6.30.

Tradie Brother was taking Step Mother home the next morning and arrived at our cottage at 9. They departed and we realised Step Mother had bought up big and cheaply on Apple Cider when we stopped along the way at Dan Murphys, one dozen small bottles, and she had left them in the fridge, so we called them and they returned in about ten minutes to get them.

We left the cottage at check out time, 10, and caught up briefly with Sister and Bone Doctor, Ex Sis in Law, Hippie Niece and The Twins at the church hall where a clean up was happening. I still can't tell the twins apart. Via a lunch stop again at Routleys Bakery, with not a hot tradie in sight, we were home by 12.30 and rested for the rest of the day.

27 comments:

  1. It sounds absolutely blissful and there are some sentimental tears pricking at my eyelids again.
    Little Jo may have been wrong about TA - that time, but he did his very ineffectual best to ensure that this wedding didn't take place either.
    I hadn't realised (or had forgotten) that theirs was the last wedding before our conservative pollies jumped in.

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    1. Well EC, it seems Little Jo was quite right. See the comment from Marcellous below. I also didn't realised how few there were in the ACT. That you are sentimental about the wedding is to your credit and one of the many reasons why I like you.

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  2. The wedding sounds like a really joyous celebration of love and your description such a great read.

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    1. Too kind Cheryl but thank you.

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  3. Wow! What an interesting event! Not too many weddings going on in my circle these days.
    I am glad Little Jo participated in the wedding. So important. When I married Jack my daughter and his daughter were my attendants. It was a fine wedding.
    Sounds like Sister and Bone Doctor's wedding was too!

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    1. Maribeth, I expect you will live to be old enough to see your grandchildren wed. I am sure your wedding was good, as was my sister's.

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  4. Lovely to hear all about the wedding and the trust that goes with eating cake from a knife held by another. I'm glad everything went so well. Was surprised to hear that sister sang along with Petula Clark, I had no idea she could sing. Having said that, I remember also singing along to that same song when I loved it years ago and am off to I-tunes now to buy it for my playlists.
    No photos of the wedding dress?

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    1. Thanks River. Sister can do everything, but not things in fine detail. She is a generalist. Be patient about photos. Life is so busy at the moment. I prefer to watch the performers singing than just hearing them. That makes me a dinosaur, I know, and no matter how hard Spotify nags me, I am not going there.

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  5. It all sounds great. :)

    Solving the world's problems over a bottle of Scotch is always fun, too....even if the problems, and a hangover, are still there the next morning!

    Back in early 1966, I was an attendant at a wedding...the bride led her bloody chihuahua
    and its puppies down to the altar. At one point, my fellow attendant and I thought we were going to trip over the dogs! And when the wedding photos were taken, the dogs featured prominently in every one...more than the groom did!

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    1. Lee, only half the bottle was consumed and I don't do hangovers. I am bound to get myself into trouble for saying, but I think I would 'push with my foot' the chihuahua and pups out of the way. Noting the year, maybe the groom was quite happy not to be strongly featured in photos.

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    2. I felt like doing what you say, Andrew! But I controlled myself...somehow! lol

      The couple met only a few months earlier at my 21st birthday party. She was a Canadian who lived in the flat adjacent to the one I lived in. He was a friend of radio friends of mine and we all suspected and/or knew the groom was gay, and where surprised when they announced they were marrying...and so soon after meeting.

      He was a brilliant jazz pianist and played professionally in clubs in and around Brisbane.

      Needless to say, the marriage only lasted a few months, not much more. I still have my suspicions she may have married for residency reasons...I don't really know.

      I ran into her a couple of years later up in Mackay when I visiting my now late brother who lived in Mackay at the time.

      I asked no questions. It was none of my business.

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    3. Lots of colour and movement, and interest. Thanks Lee.

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  6. Some of the guests may well have been on the conservative side of social matters, and not just because there were farmers at a same sex wedding. I have seen conservative aunts and uncles disapproving of alcohol, bridal dresses with boobage exposed, use of a celebrant instead of a cleric, number of invitees etc etc. Mind you, a same sex marriage is even more of a challenge to the elderly aunts :)

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    1. Ah yes Hels, the ubiquitous elderly aunts. I think I am nearly one myself. I remember, with some disappointment, about what you said about some of your acquaintances when the same sex marriage legislation was up for a public vote. No matter, it was just lovely.

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  7. I'm exhausted after reading all about that. Sounds like fun; no fights, no-one sick, and no-one dressed as Kangaroos in church. Well done to all.

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    1. Cro, I will always work hard to ensure there is no family friction, but it is not a hard task. No kangas in church, except for Skip, Skippy, Joey (baby kangaroo), Little Jo. Only Mother really calls her Skip now. My late Step Father gave her the name.

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  8. Well that reads as a wonderful wedding with all have a good time. A full day and sounds like a good night with that bottle of whiskey.

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    1. Margaret, we had just the right amount of whisky, to talk freely with honesty, yet not stay up to a silly hour and be fresh the next day.

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  9. Andrew,

    I'd say Little Jo was right and you have misremembered. You are getting mixed up with the earlier civil union and civil partnership legislation which were both stymied by the Howard Govt.

    This is from Wikipedia re same-sex marriage in the ACT:

    "The Australian Capital Territory is unique in being the only state or territory jurisdiction to have independently legalised same-sex marriage. The High Court of Australia nullified a same-sex marriage law that had been passed by the Australian Capital Territory (ACT) legislature on 19 September 2013. The Commonwealth Government challenged the law shortly after passage and the High Court voided the legislation on 12 December 2013. The 31 same-sex marriages that had been performed under the ACT legislation are consequently void."

    That has to be TA rather than "H"JH, doesn't it?

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    1. You and Little Jo are right. And I, like Andrew was wrong. Mea Culpa.

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    2. Marcellous, don't blame EC. I was the one who really had it wrong and led her memory wrongly. 2013, the year we had three PMs. Now I really get the nastiness in Little Jo's off the cuff speech, and the approving nastiness from the guests at the mention of TA. What a nasty man. Treasure you M, and I am so lucky to have you to pick up on my gross errors. 😘

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    3. Andrew
      i don't blame anyone, least of all EC.

      And:

      http://highriser.blogspot.com/2013/12/its-all-in-name-37.html

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    4. Yeah, I do forget what I write and I am surprised what pops up that I have written when Googling.

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  10. That was a nice wedding ! I like informal once ! I have never laughed so much than at the wedding of my son. The kids were waving with balloons a little 2 year old climbed on the lap of the woman who married them, and my grandson gave the wedding rings to his parents with the remark : The big one is for Papa, the small one is for Mamma !

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    1. Gattina, that is really funny about the rings. And a child crawling on to the lap of an official person must have been fun.

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  11. Wow, what a shindig, sounds tremendously enjoyable and happy. Makes me wish to have been there.

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    1. Strayer, such a happy occasion. As an honorary guest, you would have loved it.

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Democracy is all very well, but why give it to the people? - Audrey Forbes-Hamilton.