Thursday, October 16, 2008

the wedding: date

The rest of the Royal Hotel did not disappoint. From the expansive veranda you enter a wooden-floored, modern interpretation of colonial splendour with magical proportions of vintage and minimalism. A cosy, cool wooden bar with old-school portraits of national hero’s and a clean and simple dining area with crisp white linen. From here French doors open onto a split-level terrace with generous wooden tables made for feasting. Beyond the terrace lies the vast lawn, gently sloping down to a stone amphitheatre looking over the Riebeek Valley. Not to mention that there is also a tiny chapel, should the big church right next door not be your cup of tea. Simply put, it was perfect and we were sold.

Upon enquiring we found that the hotel only had a couple of Saturdays booked out for weddings in the next year, so we could choose our date. This might be wonderful news for most brides-to-be, but in me it caused bewilderment!

How does one pick a wedding date?

BB sat me down and patiently guided me until we sussed out my priorities. He couldn’t give a damn when we married, as long as I didn’t make him wait too long.
So, my first consideration was season: I live for hot summer weather, a day without sun is a great sadness to me. So it would have to be summer in the Cape, therefore November – March.
Second was the length of time we wanted to be engaged. We had only really known each other for eight months and I felt it would be wise to give us another couple of months to make sure our compatibility was not just the result of infatuation + distance. (Yes, you see, the cynic in me alive and kicking!) It was around February at this time so the next summer seemed reasonable, the following one way too far. Summer 08/09 it would be then.
Third issue for me was close friends who live overseas. You see, South Africans travel / work / migrate internationally at the drop of a hat. So at least a couple of really close friends (and a couple of bridesmaids) would have to come from the US and UK. Most of the émigrés usually return for holidays in the summer sun over Christmas, so I thought it would be polite to have our wedding around that time. We checked a calendar and picked a Saturday: 20 December 2008.

We were pencilled in at the hotel, I started sending e-mails. I wanted to do save-the-dates and started working on something I’d seen in my first wedding magazine, but my serious lack of design skills and software sabotaged the effort early on. So e-mails would have to suffice. Just as I was starting to spread the word, some of the initial responses made me doubt the date. As the doubt grew, other details also entered the fray. I realise now that I opened myself up to way too many opinions at this stage. But then that’s me, the original people-pleaser.

Some friends liked that the date was close to Christmas, some did not. The florist/decorator I really wanted (because they did our friends’ wedding and it was lovely and they were the only florist/decorators I knew!) was not available. A friend of my sister’s got engaged and instantly informed everyone that her date was 20 December. BB actually piped up and said he’d feel weird being away from his family on honeymoon over Christmas. (Excuse me? I’m your family now, buddy! But we worked that out…) Some family members (who will not be named right now, you know who you are) mentioned how uncomfortably hot it could get it December. Others discreetly informed me that their Christmas holidays had already been booked and would make their attendance impossible.

After hours of deliberation, the practical drawing up of a pros and cons list and serious soul-searching angst on my side, we came up with a new date.

Saturday 22 November 2008.

I like the way it looks, 22/11. I love November. I like that the 22nd sits nicely spaced between BB’s birthday in October, my birthday in November and then Christmas. It will certainly make for an exciting end-of-year every year! Another volley of mixed responses made me realise what BB told me from the start: You can’t please everyone all the time. We’d found our date and we were sticking to it.


Being Brazen said...

Oh my goodness that is soooo soon. How exciting!!!!! Wow, you must be in "wedding mode" right now :)

Brandi said...

Where are pics of this amazing venue?! I want to see it, sounds so lovely!

Kimberly Julie said...

I second brandi! I'm going to need a visual of this dream venue, stat! ;)

DT said...

You must be soooo excited Redframe!
(*November is also my Birthday month *)

I cant wait to hear more!!!

Anonymous said...

Oh my goodness! That is so soon! Hooray!

AmyJean said...

That's awesome and its true, you can't please everyone! I love november too :)

Riley (aka Rachel) said...

How funny... living here in Texas, we decided to pick November because it WASN'T summer!! It's not cold here, yet. Just beautiful gorgeous weather. Warm days and cool nights.
I didn't want to sweat in my dress! ;-)

How ironic that you choose the same month that I did, but for an opposite reason.

Carol said...

So you're getting married in a month. Wow! Brave girl!

melissa said...

So it's soon! Really soon! I also love double numbers like that. 11 and 22 are good numbers.

And I'm with riley - I love this time of year because it's NOT hot. Steve and I had to get married in mid-September (1996, to be exact) because of his military schedule and I was so relieved. I love September through December. The rest of the year not so much.

Everything sounds beautiful by the way, from your posts below as well. I haven't been commenting much, but I am still reading. :)

Jenny said...

That is SO soon! I'm so excited! I can't wait to hear more about the details!

The Cwtch said...

Oooooh that's so soon - yay! I am excited! Having heard your story from the beginning it makes it all the more lovely!

Broke-ass Bride said...

Wowweeee! That's really exciting, but we do need pics young lady. I love the ring that date has to it... and a thanksgiving season wedding gives you even more to be thankful for :)
I can't wait to hear the details.

Charlie said...

That IS soon. Can't believe you waited so long to start blogging!

That marquee in your last post was beautiful. We need pictures of the actual venue!

redframe said...

Brazen, soon? Really? Oh sh*t you're right! I am on standby for full-on wedding mode. I think the 22nd of October should jerk me out of my complacency!

Brandi, promise to post some pics soon, wait I'll go do it right now.

Kimberly, stat.

DT, Hello! I instantly liked you when I saw you were a Scorpio! Very excited, slightly overwhelmed and greatly in denial round about now!

Mrs S, picture me shivering in fear at the soon-ness!

Amyjean, luckily once the decision was made and injured parties had said their peace, I never doubted it again. And now I'm so glad it's sooner rather than later!

Rachel, that's classic. I also would prefer not to sweat in my dress but I WILL NOT stand and shiver in it either. And ours is very outdoorsy, and as a rule we don't have temperature control anywhere indoors! Quite a challenge then, picking the right day!

Carol, brave for the marrying or brave for the timing?

Melissa, good to hear from you thanks for still being here! You veteran of marriage you.

Jenny, yes, it's all in the details isn't it? The devil too.

Cwtch, thank you! Obviously I do love our story. Lots of twists still to come, can you believe it.

Broke-ass, pictorials on the way, promise. I'm a SUPER grateful girl.

Charlie, yeah started a bit late in the game. Only discovered internet this year okay? Had a lot of catching up to do! Pictures on their way.

Guilty Secret said...

OMG it's so soon! Just 2 weeks after ours, so 5 weeks tomorrow! EEEK!

Hollywood Tai Tai said...

Congratulations to all the November brides! Guilty Secret, we have the same wedding date! :)

Hannah Noel said...

Wow that's soon!!! Good luck with your planning!! I just started up my wedding-planning-blog-- I'd love for you to check it out! (it's still fairly new, so it doesn't have a pretty layout or anything yet!)

that [engaged] girl

redframe said...

GS, so glad yours is first, I'm feeling way behind schedule today. So I'll have to buck up and get sh*t done! Eek.

hollywood, 'yay' for november, and also 'freak out' for november cause it's almost upon us!!!

hannah, thanks and i'll be over shortly!