Some diligent readers will recall that back in May of 2007, my dear husband Glenn made a trip to Japan. He traveled to serve as a witness to his brother's marriage, however it took over a year of planning to arrange a US event in honor of the two of them. First, they had a wedding in Japan on the first anniversary of their marriage. Then, finally, our family and their dearest friends in the US, plus three special guests from Japan, gathered in Capitola to celebrate on August 16th.
Capitola is a cute, beach resort town, south of San Francisco, and the summer weather was benevolent, especially for those of us escaping the heat wave in the interior of the state.
Fog rolled in each evening, but was gone by morning, and the views were terrific. This photo looks across Monterey Bay from Capitola beach to New Brighton beach.
Most of Glenn (DH) and Dave (DBIL)'s family gathered the afternoon before, taking over a B&B called The Inn At Depot Hill. Each room there has a special theme, and Dave had fun assigning his guests to rooms that he thought matched them best; we were in the Railroad Baron Room, most likely a better match for Glenn than me...
Friday night, fifteen of us, including Dave and his bride Ryoko, her parents and best friend from Japan, Glenn's parents, sister and children, and my nieces (well, they are also Dave's daughters) all had dinner at a local pizzeria, and celebrated niece Allison's 17th birthday, then joined in conviviality with the other people staying at the inn. We mostly all turned in early, as the wedding ceremony was set for 10:30 AM.
I discovered that dressing in kimono cultivates much patience; it took about 25 minutes to get each outfit on properly, and that is with the experienced help of Ryoko and her mother... when I helped my nieces out of their kimonos later in the day, it took 10 minutes to locate all the sashes and ties to disassemble them!
The wedding party assembled at the Shadowbrook restaurant, where the two girls and the bride processed down stone steps reminscent of old Japanese villages, to join Dave and face the guests.
The story unfolded, with help of modern technology, of how the two met (they had been acquaintances for six years before they started dating, and took advantage of Skype to carry on a long-distance relationship for several months before their marriage and Ryoko's move to the US).
The couple re-stated their vows to each other... here, Ryoko looks over to me, very nervous about standing up to address the guests.. she is still convinced that her English is hard to understand, but that is not so.
Everyone was relieved to climb out of their wedding clothes (especially my two nieces, as unused to wearing kimonos as they were), and spend the afternoon exploring the beach and shops (I even snuck in a short visit to a place called The Yarn Shop).
and were sereneded in Japanese... an altogether lovely time.