After 24 hours back in town and a solid night's sleep, I am back. The wedding this weekend was of my friend L.Le and her fiance B.Ke. L.Le was a good friend from college, and we became “travel buddies” after graduation*. Myself, Spice, J.Po and her manfriend Jiggity all decided to meet up and carpool out to Ann Arbor to keep costs to a minimum. J.Po/Jiggity flew in to O'Hare Friday night** and crashed at my place before Spice drove through town to pick us up in the rental car. Also traveling along was a cardboard cutout picture of our friend A.St, who is on vacation in the Galapagos with her family but who didn't want to miss attending the festivities in some form. We piled into the car and headed over to pick up some brunch before leaving town. L.Le had a pre-wedding reception/party at her folk's place that evening and we wanted to be sure we had enough time to get there at a reasonable hour
Now, as many of you know, Chicago is in the central time zone and Ann Arbor is in the eastern time zone. All four of us in the car also knew this, having gone to very good schools for undergrad and grad school. Yet we somehow all failed to recall about losing the hour until J.Po suddenly piped up and said “Hey, why does my cell phone say it's 6:30?” when the car's built-in clock clearly said it was an hour earlier. Needless to say, there was much chagrin felt all around.
We did make it in time for the last half-hour of the reception, but by that time most of the food was already eaten***. But by that time we were just happy to make it at all, considering that the house was located in the middle of a wilderness. I was unaware that any wilderness was left in a 100 mile radius of Detroit, but it does, and L.Le's folk's house is located right in the middle of it. Frankly, I was a little worried about bear attacks.
The next morning we woke up planning to go meet some other alumni friends for brunch at a popular local spot called Zingerman's, followed by awalking tour of Ann Arbor and maybe the U Mich campus. While the brunch was excellent, the walking tour left much to be desired because it was approximately eleventy billion degrees outside, which was enough to melt shoe soles as well as our desire to play tourist. We did have fun walking around with the cutout of A.St though, because she was mounted on the end of a yardstick, we appeared to be a small student group protesting something. Apparently, what we were protesting was a topic of much consternation amongst the townspeople, many of whom gave me**** unusual looks, or just marched up and asked us what we were protesting – a source of much bemusement to the group.
Eventually we were beat into submission by the heat, and returned to the hotel to wring out our sweat-drenched clothes, shower, and get dressed for the wedding. The ceremony itself was held on the grounds of an old mansion north of Detroit (apparently, Eminem got married here at one point during one of his marriages to Kim). The grounds were gorgeous, the people were friendly, and there was a huge thunderstorm earlier in the day which helped cool things off just enough to make the weather tolerable.
The ceremony was fine, but it was the party afterwards which was freaking awesome. A.St and I sat together at our table***** with a lot of other alumni from OAM and two strangers. Now, people from Our Alma Mater tend to be pretty raucous at weddings – to the point where we are typically isolated on the fringes of the reception hall, far away from family and non-OAM friends. But at this wedding we were right down front and center – next to the dance floor. We responded dutifully, occupying the dance floor whenever music that wasn't house****** was playing. I think I danced more last night than I have in months, which has resulted in serious soreness permeating my legs and shoulders even now. Much of the shoulder soreness can probably be attributed to my carrying A.St around all evening, despite her getting to dance with every other OAM alumni in the room at one point or another*******.
On top of all this, B&L had five different wedding cakes! I was in heaven. I think I had 4-5 pieces of three different kinds of cake. It was freaking awesome! Thankfully, the music was also good, so I returned to the dance floor to burn off the cake before it went to my gut. More adventures ensued there, but those'll have to wait until tomorrow – this post is already way too long and I need to get back to work.
* Touring places like NYC and the big trip to France and Spain in 2002
** And arrived – shockingly – an hour and a half late
*** With the exception of some cookies and assorted raw vegetables, which made for a dinner of questionable nutritional value'
**** Me being the designated “A.St carrier” most of the trip
***** Table 11 rulez!
****** House music was never big at OAM; Prince, Madonna, ABBA, and Pet Shop Boys however will send us scurrying to the dance floor like roaches with the lights turned off.
******* She partied harder that night than I've ever thought possible – about halfway through the night, she was wearing my necktie around her head like a bandana. By the time we got back to the hotel, she was so wasted that she passed out in the bathtub. Those cardboard cutouts sure can't hold their liquor...