About one year ago, I promised to write about an event I attended. It was a beautiful affair, located in (of all places) Lakewood, New Jersey, and I had a blast.
I never wrote about it. In fairness to me, I was quite busy at the time... but then it slipped my mind, and I kept looking for a good opportunity to write it, and it just didn't happen. It is now one year later, and I'm not one for breaking promises, so here we go - a promise (belatedly) fulfilled:
What was so fascinating about the event I was invited to was that it was a wedding, and I'd received a formal invitation, and yet... I'd never met either the bride or the groom before. As far as I knew, I'd know only two other attendees: Moshe, and Mir. I drove straight from work with Mir and three others whom I didn't know in the back, and after a nice wait to get through the Lincoln Tunnel, we were on our way. We had a nice time shmoozing during the hour and a half drive,
Once Moshe arrived, we did something that I've never done before and there is a strong likelihood I'll never do it again: We made signs. They were pretty funny, and we knew they'd be appreciated by the kallah and perhaps even the chosson. And yet, I'd still never met either.
Part of what made the wedding so fascinating was that while I didn't know either side, I ran into a few people who I knew at the wedding in addition to Moshe and Mir, and nobody thought it strange to run into anyone who was there. Both families are from "out of town", one family has moved once or twice, and in both cases, everyone knows them - and loves them. One friend noted how he'd quickly become a ben bayis at the home of the groom's family - and this is not a friend who doesn't have plenty of family of his own. Yet there was something that drew him there and made him feel at home constantly. The bride's family is well known for their work, and one of Serach's best friends is obsessed with the whole family from her time working with them and her experiences with them when it comes to opening up their home and themselves. The positive impact each family had on any person they met was truly heart-warming and inspiring - and we haven't even gotten to the young couple.
The young couple who so graciously asked for our attendance fit right in with their families. One need only see their daily Facebook conversations or talk to any of their friends to understand what they're like and just how well liked they are, and how genuine those friendships are. They've spent their first year of marriage opening up their home to all those who need and all those who wish to join them, despite living out in small town, USA. They're just a beautiful couple, inside and out, and one can see that now just as one could see it one year ago, at their beautiful wedding.
So, to our very own Stam and M^2 - I really can't believe it's been a year already. May you continue to be blessed with happiness and health, and may your marriage continue to grow beautifully. Happy Anniversary!!