Into The Woods

Tim endured SIX layovers when going home from my wedding in Amsterdam, so there was no way I would miss his nuptials, no matter where it happened.
Tim endured SIX layovers when going home from my wedding in Amsterdam, so there was no way I would miss his nuptials, no matter where it happened.

Went into the Santa Cruz mountains, home of the glorious Northern California redwood trees for the Tim Leong-Rachel Swaby nuptials-slash-YMCA-camp. We didn’t have to kill our own food. There were pretty nice little cabins shared among groups of 14 of us, just like Girl Scout camp. We had flushing toilets, but not two-ply toilet paper. These are some things that happened:

First I spent a night in SF hanging with my friend Chris. We came back to the apartment kind of drunk and promptly parked on the street. The next morning the car was gone. Guess what the minimum tow rate in SF is? $476. And on top of that, there are about $160 parking tickets to pay. So…somehow my one bad parking mistake cost more than my roundtrip airfare to San Francisco.

After getting out to the camp, we wandered into the “town” of Boulder Creek, CA and met some anti-government guys trying to get us to sign a petition against more gun restrictions. Had we signed, we could have gotten a “I don’t call 911” t-shirt with a giant AK-47 on it. We passed. But that night, one of our bunkmates was wearing the shirt.

Justin and I tried to go on a hike. The trail was awfully rocky and steep. The sign at its entrance told us it was named the Nit Trail, but upon turning back because of the rough terrain, we pulled away a leaf to realize the sign actually said “Not a Trail.”

Patrick Terpstra, yes, that guy, officiated the ceremony. He did a brilliant, funny, heartfelt job despite my utter disbelief anyone would choose him to officiate a wedding ceremony. After the bridal party exited, he ended his emceeing by saying, “Okay we’re good then.”

During a walk along the Embarcadero, I got some sage life advice from the appropriately-named Om, a lovely and generous human being who is now a venture capitalist but always a journalist at heart.

Capped off the weekend back in SF, where I took a nice long shower all by myself in a boutique hotel. The photos. Click on any image to begin the gallery:

Home

Back from two weeks in what I’ll call an alternate reality – something like my real life, only way better. A four-day wedding extravaganza that was really more like being on vacation with thirty people we love the most, followed by basking in the sun and exploring the caves on Greece’s largest island. Aside from a rocky donkey ride and one of my bridesmaids accidentally getting her luggage sent home to Austin, NEVADA, everything went flawlessly. Travelogue is to come.

Destination Confusion

We’re I’m beginning wedding planning for nuptials in Amsterdam next May, which is already proving to be a character test.

I’m only on the first task, which is finding a suitable wedding coordinator overseas and hiring him/her without meeting face-to-face. This means I must judge them by context clues, none of which has proven satisfying. There are the people called “Wedding Planners Amsterdam” (natch), only they commit the sin of having music on their website upon arrival.

Then, I spoke to a really nice lady via Skype who runs her wedding coordinating services out of Den Haag (The Hague). I thought things were moving along well until I received an email from her in Comic Sans typeface.*

Tried another place recommended by some people on a website, since I really have no guide but the internets. That place, called “WeddingIdeaz” (I don’t know why it’s one word), has yet to answer one of my phone calls.

At this rate, I know we’re going to wind up getting hitched at City Hall. Somewhere in America.

*I think I’m getting over this one. While this would be viewed as a huge infraction if committed by an American wedding planner,  I feel the cultural disdain for Comic Sans probably hasn’t reached across the Atlantic. Perhaps it hasn’t become a cliche in Europe yet?