I’ve just returned from a picture perfect wedding in Sonoma County in California. The bride, Vanessa, is my goddaughter and the daughter of Susan, my best friend from seventh grade. She and her husband John just finished medical school and start their residencies this month. I couldn’t be prouder. Their success at marriage will depend on their communication skills and I observed them working issues through with words.

Since Vanessa and John were a bit busy with medical school, Susan planned the wedding. Susan, a graphic designer, did all the signage, too. She is one talented lady. Her husband served as support staff and our friend Alexis was the collaborator. Vanessa’s sister and brother were the schleppers. I was the one who called and asked, “how are you doing?”

Vanessa's wedding_venue

The wedding and reception took place outside at a vineyard. There were rows and rows of grape vines, mountains, and a lagoon in the distance. The day was clear and just the right temperature. We arrived early to get our makeup professionally done and Vanessa got her hair put up.

Vanessa's bride photo

The bride is Jewish and the groom Lutheran. The ceremony, held under a copse of redwood trees, was nondenominational except they stood under a huppa, the traditional Jewish wedding canopy.

Cocktails and wine flowed freely to accentuate the celebratory atmosphere. We sat at round tables overlooking the vineyard. The food was very tasty, especially the butternut squash ravioli.

Annie with Vanessa and John

At this wedding I did not feel my single status acutely. There were other single women and we mingled with everyone. The dancing was a group affair. It started with the hora, a traditional Jewish circle dance. Eight strong people lifted the bride and groom in sturdy chairs. People just stayed on the dance floor when the DJ rocked out, no need for a partner.

Weddings make me take stock of my single status. I reflected on my two marriages. The first lasted twelve years and at least ten of them were great. The second lasted fifteen years and at least twelve were great. I have warm memories of both of them and am glad I was married to each man. I don’t see another marriage in my future but I’m glad I was trustful enough to take the plunge twice.

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