This is post number five in the series. To read the previous four posts, click here.
We returned from taking the location photos, a little bit later (and sweatier) than planned thanks to the excitement of the big animal party we’d just had as it was getting dark. We quickly got some drinks, told mum about the photos and went into the hall, ready to start speeches.
Kieran was up first and gave a lovely speech about how damn great everyone there was. You always hear about weddings being stressful with there being drama between relatives or strained friendships, but I’m proud to say everyone there was just awesome. There were people from such varied friendship circles and they all got on like they’d been pals for years. I saw friends of mine who had never met hanging out and laughing like they went way back and even now I see they’re friends on facebook and it makes me heart swell with joy! So Kieran articulated something very special and important and I am so glad it happened at our wedding.
Sarah was up next and was as hilarious as expected. It did get pretty bittersweet when she said she knew we were meant to be because she kind of lost her best friend when we got together. The fact is, Sarah was a rock for me when I was going through a hellish relationship with my abusive ex, she provided endless support and reprieve for me when I needed to get away from him and got me through the nightmare that was the breakup, which I can never thank her enough for. She then let everyone know just how much work my mum out into he wedding, detailing all of the things she handmade to pointing out just how much of her own furniture filled the hall. Of course, mum cried, and found herself inundated after the speeches by people congratulating her on all her amazing work.
Ben was the last to give a speech (I’m not a particularly good public speaker and knew Ben would do an excellent job, also speeches get boring so three people was more than enough) where he thanked everyone for coming, embarrassed me by reminding everyone my new business was kicking off the following Saturday and letting everyone know dinner was up!
One of the things that worried me the most about organising was the food. We know a lot of vegetarians, vegans and coeliacs who we absolutely wanted to cater for, but there weren’t many catering companies who specialised in specific dietary requirements, plus the hall didn’t have a kitchen so everything would have to be prepared offsite. I looked into a few places for buffet-style food as I was keen to have a semi-sit down meal to go with the Haunted Mansion theme but the quotes I got were completely out of our budget. After some thought we remembered how our friends Ben and Anna had a food truck at their wedding which was such an easy, fun and affordable option. Luckily Ben’s bar shares a warehouse with the guys from Juan More Taco who were more than happy to serve their delicious tacos which catered to all of our friends perfectly! It wasn’t quite on-theme but it worked perfectly for us and everyone loved it so it was a win, win!
After people had stuffed themselves with tacos and were starting to move to the dance floor, we did the cutting of the cake and then our first dance. I absolutely loved how someone passed Ben the fake axe someone brought along as a prop so we got some excellent photos of us brandishing weapons at one another (though I realise in retrospect if it’d been anything but a Halloween themed wedding this would have been out of place, kind of tacky and bordering on joking about domestic violence which is not ok). Once the cake was cut and moved away, we had our first dance to “I Put A Spell On You” by Screamin’ Jay Hawkins which we kind of shuffled around to for a minute before we invited everyone up to dance with us. Both Ben and I love a good dance but we didn’t have any time to practice, in fact we only decided on the song about a week or two before the wedding!
I think it goes without saying that our dance floor was pretty hectic, but in the most wonderful way possible! We had our mate Nick (aka El Norto) DJ for us and he was freaking amazing! He only plays with vinyl and his collection is just amazing and he knows how to make everyone get up and dance! One f the best memories I have was talking to some friends and stopping mid-way through a sentence and saying “I’m sorry, but my mum appears to be carving up the dance floor, I need to go”. My mum was having the BEST time, dancing with anyone and everyone!
After a bunch of dancing I was getting sore feet since I’m not used to high heels any more, plus the train of my dress was getting stepped on and wasn’t particularly breathable, so I snuck off to the toilets to change into a more comfortable outfit including my favourite converse to keep dancing all night!
After a bunch more socialising with our friends, things started getting pretty crazy on the dance floor…
So back when we were in New Zealand earlier in the year, Ben heard someone playing “Dream On” by Aerosmith which became the song of the trip, culminating in him doing a very drunken dance to it for us all, which was really just him stumbling around. It was hilarious and no one who was there has let him forget it. So much so one of the beers made for the wedding was called the Jungles Stumble Dance and the decal included a clear space so that a phone playing a gif of Ben “dancing” could play on loop. So obviously this song was played for Ben to dance to, he was lifted up on shoulders to be seen by everyone, but somehow it was decided I should be lifted up too!
The dancing only got more intense from there, with a mosh pit, more unexpected lifting and then a big group hug for another of Ben’s favourite party songs by Aerosmith, “Don’t Wanna Miss A Thing“, inbetween everyone dancing up an absolute storm. All I can say is thank goodness we didn’t have a repeat of the previous October where temperatures got up to 40°C because that would have severely impacted everyone’s exuberance!
The last song of the night was “Feels Good” by Tony! Toni! Toné! for a few different reasons. Firstly, it is one of my all time favourite new jack swing songs, in fact it’s probably in my top 10 favourite songs of all times. It’s boppy and fun and about love and wanting to get married and I could dance to it forever! But the main reason we played it is because it featured in an episode of our current favourite TV show Rick & Morty (note: this clip is gorey). So yeah, we got to include one extra little bit of nerdy obnoxiousness into our wedding, which thankfully was a massive hit with everyone. Ben and I danced on the stage above everyone, before leaping off to join everyone for the last half of the song. It was absolutely the best and most perfect way for my wedding to end and I get kind of teary thinking about it still!
My last memory of the evening was stuffing my face with leftover baba ghanoush while being convinced that I was probably better off not going out to keep partying and should probably get to bed. It was the most amazing night which I will never, ever forget and I am really glad I got to share it with you all!
I would like to thank the following people for all their help:
Kristina, once again, for her amazing photos and for partying with us until late to get the most ridiculous photos of us dancing our butts off
Marjana and Jodie for getting to the hall early to finish setting up and staying on to party with us all until late
Gav, Vanessa and Ash for looking after the bar and helping us keep things orderly while also have a great time with us
Nick, for being a fan-fucking-tastic DJ and knowing all the right songs to play (and being cool with us playing a couple of our own songs that weren’t in your collection)
Juan More Taco and Alphabet cafe for providing delicious eats to sustain everyone for the dance floor
All of our friends for coming and having the best flipping time, so that all of the stress and anxiety leading up to the wedding was 110% worthwhile
The friends and family who pushed through their hangovers to help us empty and clean the hall and return all of the furniture to their rightful owners