We headed back and it was time to dress for the wedding and then wander off to the park. We hooked up with some more ex-Perth friends and huddled around chatting til the wedding party arrived. The staging was lovely - the couple walked arm in arm down an avenue lined with trees to where we were all waiting at the bottom. The bride's dress was stunning and the groom looked dashing. The whole ceremony was untraditional - there was a reading from Newscientist and one from The Lord of the Rings. I tweeted the whole thing. There was a lovely exchange of vows and rings and then they were married. We dashed off after congratulatory hugs and missed the throwing of the bouquet - oops! We went to get the present and have a quick drink before the reception.
The reception was lovely and the staff were very concerned about making sure I got dairy and gluten free meals. I had a delicious spicy asian stirfry for mains. There was much gaiety and catching up on our table as we were all old posse who have been separated by distance and ordinary demands of daily life. Was lovely to spend some real time with planeterry's Q. The speeches were funny and the food and drink was good. And we each got a lovely nameplace marker with an avatar that looked like ourselves with a few words describing us underneath. I thought that was a lovely touch. My dress gave me a wardrobe malfunction, for which I *hope* I was the only person to notice! OMG! And then it was over and we headed home to sleep!
Sunday we again slept in and then packed and checked out. Donna and Matthew picked us up and we all headed off to kaaronwarren's for breakfast. She'd promised us eggs benedict but with smoked salmon instead. And boy did she deliver!!! We had the best breakfast we'd had all holiday and were made to feel very welcome! We all sat outside in the backyard and absorbed the lovely windy, wintry weather and talked all things publishing and writing, I guess. It totally recharged my soul. Such a great way to round out a weekend of relaxing and hanging with friends by ... relaxing and hanging with friends!
Eventually it was time to leave and Donna and Matthew kindly dropped us off at the National Art Gallery and we got to see the Paris Masterpieces Exhibition. It got extended by a week!!! Much of the exhibition I had seen in Paris? (the Musee d'Orsay was closed the week I was there) Maybe Hamburg. But it's always fantastic and inspiring and food for the soul to stand and absorb. Though the crowds pissed me the hell off (dudes!! You were standing too close and MISSED THE POINT of the MOVEMENT!!) and I found that quite stressful. Still, it was great to have gone and I did find one new work that made my heart soar - called The Ball. I grabbed a print of it to frame and also one of Van Gogh’s bedroom at Arles which I love.
We were knackered after that so went and grabbed dinner and then headed off to the airport. Funnily enough, we ended up sitting in the same row as two other guests from the wedding which was a really nice way to finish the trip. It makes such a big difference when you know the people next to you on the plane (in terms of having to move or grabbing something for you etc). We ended up with a fill in movie - It's Complicated - which was probably the best option considering the amount of tired I was.
I had a really relaxing weekend. Caught up with friends. Chilled out. I read a lot - 2 novels and 2 graphic novels and also did editing for Sprawl. And on top of that, I finished the sock I was knitting at Swancon (ran out of yarn for the toe) and cast on for the pair of socks I want to knit for me - in a pattern called Marble Arches from the Socks That Rock Sock Club from YEARS ago. I slept well and am rearing to go!
And now its all delicious and wintry here too!