So. As previously mentioned, Ursie and Hyoun had their (American) wedding today. (The one in Korea was a while ago. Lots of lovely pics!)
Short version: I went with JD and Ryan and we met lots of people and had a blast. Pictures forthcoming in, like, morningness or something.
I generally tend to overpack for road trips, because you never know what you're going to need. I grabbed a number of things and stuffed them in my all-purpose tote bag.
My schedule has been inverted for a bit, despite my attempts to rectify it. I wound up taking a nap for a few hours, after reading for a bit, then woke up bright and early and started preparing.
I was plotting to leave on the early side to get going in a timely fashion; I didn't actually succeed in early, but I did get to the BART station where I was to meet the boys a few minutes before our planned rendezvous.
They had had a laundry emergency. Thus I zipped over in the direction of their place to pick them up. They were all spiffed out and looking nice!
There was a brief moment of who-goes-where; it was Ryan's turn to sit in the front seat, though they'd gone to the usual places without overthinking things; they declared that they could switch at the 7-11. "What 7-11?" quoth I (well, perhaps not literally; I may have just eyebrowed); they said we should stop for drinks. Quite all right; there was wiggle room in the schedule.
So they directed to the nearest 7-11. I did not so much want to come in, as my back had just only a little earlier in the morning declared its rebellion. I gave my preferences in slushy drink (strawberry, orange, grape). Teshi presently popped back out to inquire whether strawberry/pineapple/lime would be acceptable (yes). (He had thought so; JD had doubted.) We headed off on our merry way, with radio-wrangling and general cheer.
The 280 was sunny and relatively clear of traffic. We made our way to Gilroy for lunch in decent time, and had lunch at the closest Sonic to the Bay Area. We located a Target (there was some doing with the Google Maps); JD ran in to get a card and suchlike. He ran out in short order, and we were on our way again, it being 1:30-ish with plenty of time ... only to find that the 101 was ass, with horrible horrible backup with seemingly no cause in sight. Was it the renfair? Who knew?!
The trusty satnav Riddle provided some roadblock avoidance techniques. This was not planned for. This was too much traffic. The schedule started sagging.
Offroad we went, on very narrow "two-lane" paved rural roads, which are one-lane to a city slicker and two-lane from those around these parts. Fortunately, I am an Alaskan, and I know from roads. I felt out of place on them in my shiny fancy sedan that can barely hold a spare tire, basic emergency kit, and groceries.
We had to make several detours, and each time got stuck in a row of traffic very slow and scarily so. JD advised Twitter, and may have sent a DM to @jpallan, who, as I learned, was Matron of Honor. (She is a familiar individual from years of QDB history.)
101 finally let up, and we got ourselves onto another highway in any case. We got near town and we were only a little late. On our way in, we noticed some awesome "dong stoplights": two red lights up top, yellow and green dangling below. LOLWAT. No pic, though.
Ursie warned that parking at the place was likely to be assy. We found a parking spot .35 miles from the projected address. We hopped out and headed on foot. The boys steamed on ahead; I marched behind.
We arrived, in more or less a cluster-ish formation (strung out a bit) as the processional started. There was a brief completely stressy communications panic, but it all sorted out in the end; we ducked into the seats after the marching was done.
The wedding was beautiful, overlooking the rocky coast and sea behind, with trees framing. They wrote their oaths themselves, and mixed touching, powerful, and humorous elements that all showed, when taken together, how very deeply they know each other. Ursie was a vision in white with flowered combs pinning her hair sleekly back, and a lovely dress with a top that laced in the back, a train, and sparkly sequined bits up top. Hyoun and the groomsmen wore opaque white shirts under absolutely gorgeous transparent white traditional tops with such excellent intricate embellishments. The bride's attendants were in dark blue with silver shoes. After taking oaths, the couple was wrapped, shawl-like, in a veil to symbolize their union, with a cord in an infinite loop over their heads as well. There were rings and kissing.
There was greeting and excellence. The wedding party adjourned to a rockier, oceanier, beachier bit of the area. Jpallan and crschmidt's daughters were freed from their ceremonial roles and ran about with assorted glee and angst. The middle girl had been trading flowers to upgrade hers, and had landed a bridesmaid's bouquet. Much to her dismay, incautious handling had snapped the rose, though the spray of blue flowers remained intact.
I chatted with someone whose username is now in my bag all the way over there somewhere too far away to reach from bed and I'm not moving. She had cold hands. I did not. I played instant handwarmer. I have good circulation, at least in my hands, and if I've been walking, that drives my general temperature up quite nicely, and this is extended to my hands.
I did try helping with the folding chairs, but (wonder of wonders) there were paid minions for that! Amazing!
JD and Teshiron scored a map to the reception off crschmidt, and we hiked back to the car; I stopped to take pictures of the amazing view. I want to paint the ocean there. SO much. Oh my.
Getting to the reception proved unusually challenging; little twisty roads! Got turned around twice before the satnav got us there OK, but OK we indeed got.
The reception was in an Elks hall. We signed the commemorative photo mat they had out in lieu of a guestbook, JD and Ryan signing together, me signing for myself and serving as signing proxy for #dw and #lj_s. (My message, for posterity, was "OMG WEDDING".)
I had offered my sketching services for the interior of the card JD had picked out. It was a delightful pun to start with: captioned "Perfect Pair", with a pair of pears. Inside, of course, the only thing that could be put there, and it could not be *not* put there: the Biting Pear. So I did a quick concept sketch to refresh my brains, on the tablet I'd brought with, and then did a better sketch on the card.
Naturally, Ursie walked by just as I was finishing up, which left JD in a desperate struggle to make it unseen fast. There was some teasing but I do not believe any spoilers.
We gravitated into conversational groups over things to munch on. With much excellence, Ursie had seated the three of us plus the woman I'd handwarmed at the wedding plus the couple we'd hung with while they were passing through SF, and that's just who we'd been talking to, with another couple who was at an adjacent table. Prescient seating arrangements! Though we did split the chatter by tables, once the DJ called us to order.
The tables were excellent in decoration and design. There was an aquatic theme to the decorations: all place cards had a small shell or other item; all tables had a different stuffed animal and a line drawing of the animal, and a number. (There were also M&Ms with the date and their names.) The place cards were arrayed on a table near the front of the hall; we all picked ours up on coming in. Rather than enforce a strict seating order, the placecards were numbered to match the tables, but were otherwise unsorted. Thus, table groupings were created, but any given table grouping could self-organize without a rigid structure imposed from above.
The couple made a tables tour, giving hugs all around and chatting.
The foodz were good.
1) Romaine salad with raspberries, walnuts, some sharp crumbly cheese (bleu?), and, to my delight, pansies. :D Since I am not deathly allergic to walnuts, I partook of the rest of the salad with great cheer. No-one wanted my nuts, however. I should have checked JD to make sure he was not eating as I offered them to him.
2) Asparagus, with decorative strips of what looked like bell peppers. I avoided picking up any of those.
3) Bread and butter. Omnomnom.
4) Snap peas with garnish. (Again, watch me avoid the bell pepper and devour the greens.)
5) Salmon. Tasty.
6) Rice, mixed types. Omnomnom.
7) Ravioli, of which I did not partake.
8) A lovely tender bit of delightful rare beef, with
9) a lovely dark sauce that included mushrooms and probably wine. Omnomnom.
Champagne was handed around for toasting. The lady across the table said something about "double fisting" it; JD, whose mind was in the gutter, cracked up more than I did. I immediately popped up to advise jpallan that the requisite mention of fisting had occurred. ("It took this long?" she wondered; her wedding, it had come up almost immediately. However, her wedding had been 1) a morning wedding, with 2) an open bar, and 3) raventhon. No mystery about the speed with which fisting came up *there*.)
The Father of the Bride talked about exploration of unknown lands and travel and the like, and lo, the speechifying was good. Jpallan and the brother of the groom spoke, and lo, that was good too.
After the dinner and speechifying, the bride and her father took the first dance. Then Ursie and Hyoun, in lieu of the second first dance, sang a duet, which I will offload from my camera probably tomorrow.
Then came the cutting of the cake.
The cake was gorgeous: creamy white with white chocolate seashells, with a silver topper of entwined hearts, sitting in a sugar starfish with more white chocolate seashells. Someone's grandmother's friend told me in my ear that they were too young to be sleeping together. Hilarity.
Dancing commenced, and karaoke. I got up to dance, and missed the handing out of cake; I found that I did not mind so much missing the initial handing out, and decided that in any case I should wait until less full. (I never did wind up seeking out a piece, which did not alarm me; if the opportunity had presented itself I should have liked to, but I do not regret that it did not.)
I asked the DJ for a particular song, but it did not wind up in the lineup. Alas. ;)
Jpallan announced intent to do Bad Touch karaoke once the oldest people had cleared out, but things ended before that point.
Crschmidt wonz the priez for most awesomest dancer, due to his skillz and energy on the floor, plus an inspired karaoke duet with the middle daughter on Katy Perry's Hot and COld, utterly saving the day from what could have been a Bad Moment Indeed.
I danced rather more than I thought I would, including to a swing medley that the DJ declared was for the old folks. My high school drama class had covered swing, and I found I was itching to be up there. I coaxed JD up, and soon we were swinging about, to my delight and his bemusement. At one point I overbalanced and took a spill; undaunted, I tried to incorporate a few floor moves while I was down there, then popped back up and kept on dancing. Didn't feel a thing. Love Shack. The finale, where we all circled up around the pair. The middle Schmidt kept staring at my feet, and eventually asked in some degree of confusion, why my feet were dark but my face and hands were light. I explained and then showed my black knee-high stockings. (Was not expecting that question!)
The Schmidt brood evidently have a preference for dark chocolate, and know their preferred cocoa percentage. This is utterly endearing.
The favor packets reinforced the gender binary, which was greeted with a certain amount of cheerful razzing. Ryan and I started a Sound of Music duet on our way out to the car, which filled JD with horror; evidently this forfeited us our radio privs on the way back. JD claimed front seat.
There was a bit of wandering around lost getting to the right direction heading out on 1 back up. We saw fireworks on the approach to Santa Cruz. There was another bit of finagling finding a gas station in Santa Cruz; there was some exciting zooming through narrow back roads in the dark, not quite in the red. (Vash gets good gas mileage; it wasn't really a danger.) We refueled, got beverages, and were off again. JD conked out in the back.
17 between Santa Cruz and San Jose is a twisty, hilly fucker. Bonus points: DARK. TRAFFIC. It was all right, though, and we got ourselves on 85 then 280 and then it was smooth sailing. (Not the style, silly.) They, then I, were safe home.
There was a bit of good news waiting for me in my inbox: phone interview for a position that I really, really covet, on Thursday. Here's hoping. I really think I could rock that position.