My day (Dave) started off a little earlier than I had planned, waking up around 6:30. I mostly wondered around the hotel room, declining breakfast with a few people.... I don't like to eat in the mornings and my stomach was already a little nervous. I had to do checks with Mariko's family to make sure we didn't wander the around the hotel at the same time, didn't want any accidents happening.
Finally we got the go ahead that Mariko was on the way to the venue, so I met my dad down in the lobby and we started our trek over also..... and the nerves also got kicked up a notch!! Decorations were being setup by a variety of family members, giving the wedding party time to get things all taken care of.
Thank you to everyone that helped out!!!!
At this point the groomsmen and my father were busy trying to keep me from freaking out too much. Yes I was freaking out quite a bit, and they were forcing me to drink water and eat..... something about not wanting me to pass out. Josh was very adamant about not wanting to carry me down the aisle. I was able to get some fruit into me, at least enough to satisfy everyone. Luckily the photographers showed up around that time to start pre-wedding photos. Its always nice to have something to do, tend to ease the nerves a bit. Family pictures for me went rather smoothly, and we were ushered back inside so that Mariko's family pictures could finish up.
It was nearing 11:15am at this point, and there was still no sign of our officiant... you can imagine how nervous I was in general and then hearing that. Luckily we found out that there was severe traffic on the highway, not really a lucky thing usually but better than him deciding not (or forgetting) to show to marry us!! With extreme patience I waited, while still being reminded to breathe... and to walk slowly... and to not lock my knees. More of that pesky "No Fainting" business. And then the officiant was there, and checking in with everyone.... and suddenly time began to move really quickly.
The grandparents were seated, the parents had just sat down and now the officiant was making his way out. He had given us instructions the day before, and a reminder just as he walked out, but the only thing I was thinking at that point was "What am I supposed to do?!" My body seemed to remember even if my brain had turned off, though I KNOW I walked to fast. Just can't help it, not a big fan of public speaking or standing in front of crowds and here I was the focus of 80+ people! AGHH!!
No mishaps however, all the groomsmen and bridesmaids walked safely down to the locations. I kept looking out into the crowd occasionally and it was nice to see all the family and friends gathered there. Though nearly everyone had this little smirk on there face, laughing at me lightly. Wonder why? And then the music changed over and Mariko and her dad walked out. I feel secure enough in my manliness to admit that I almost starting crying, it was really hard not to. Mariko looked beautiful!! Dale finished walking her down and handed her off to me, and I couldn't help but smile and stare at her. Interestingly enough after the ceremony Mariko told me that she thought I looked like I was about to throw up. I promise there was no reaction like that at all. And for those of you who were not able to attend the wedding, or could not hear, here are the vows that we spoke:
"Mariko and David, you have come here today as two individuals complete with your past memories, hopes and desires. You are choosing to join hands and walk the path of life together as a couple. Will you bring to this new union the very best that you are and can be? Will you always seek avenues of mutual respect and kindness with an emphasis on unconditional love?"
After that we both had individual vows:
"David, will you commit to stifling your urge for the good natured argument and sometimes just let it be?"
"Mariko, will you worry less and trust in David to help carry your burdens?"
Obviously we said we do to all of the above. We signed the marriage certificate in front of everyone, Dan pronounced us husband and wife, and I was allowed to kiss the bride! We had the DJ play a small riff of Victory Fanfare during our kiss. For those that aren't familiar with Victory Fanfare, it is from Final Fantasy VII and is played at the end of a battle. Yes, we are geeks.
Mariko and I walked down the aisle as husband and wife, followed by our attendants. Pictures of course started shortly after, and I must apologize to everyone in them. It was hot. I am sorry, but thank you, thank you, thank you for dealing with the heat. Marriage done! Pictures done! And now it was time to party
The reception started off with food. And yes once again I was being forced to eat, though I knew it was a good idea there was just so much going on that I wasn't hungry. But I ate anyway, and the food was good so that always helps. Dale had a good toast, very Japanese with the traditional Banzai shout. Next up cake cutting! Here is a little tip for everyone out there, if you want to have a cake look good and be in regular shapes.... don't have Mariko and I cut it for you! We slaughtered our piece. Though it still tasted very good!
While the cake was being cut into eatable pieces, Mariko and I had our first dance together. And once again the geekiness comes out in us, as our first dance was "Eyes on Me" by Faye Wong. It is from Final Fantasy VIII (noticing a pattern here) and is a game that revolves around the romance of two characters. Mariko and I did a simple box step, and only started practicing the night before.... and yet it went very nicely. Luckily we had other join us dancing after about half the song, we didn't want people staring at us dancing for almost 6 mins.
The rest of the wedding was a blur of dancing, pictures, cake and chit-chatting! It was an amazing and fun time for Mariko and I, and we are so happy to be able to have so many friends and family be able to be there with us. And though I said this would be three posts worth, I realize that if I go any longer with this single post everyone would stop reading and boycott any further posts. So on that note, I'll have a smaller one (I promise this time) posted at another time.