The M word

On hearing the news...

On hearing the news…

Oh boy, is that heavy stuff.

Which is why you have to rest your head on the chair?

I just wasn’t expecting it, that’s all.

Well, think of it as a permanent version of the current situation.

Wow, that sounds good!

My thoughts exactly. Want to hear the story?

Hey yes!

You know we’ve bought a house together? Well, we were having this conversation about writing a will together to ensure that whoever “goes” first leaves the house to whoever is left – it can get really complicated otherwise. So the conversation went something like this:

Me: “Or we could get married. But you don’t believe in marriage”

Marianne: “Well maybe I’ve changed my mind”

Me: “So you’d consider it then?” (doing some serious fishing here)
Marianne: “I might”
Me: after a long pause “So will you marry me then?”
Marianne: “Yes, I will!” (also after a significant pause).

Weren’t you nervous?

No, not really. She wasn’t looking shocked and I could see her starting to smile.

Wow, that simple huh?

Well the actual ceremony was something else. It took a while to get Marianne’s ID sorted out (she’s on a German passport) and then we had to go and book at the Magistrate’s Court in town. They have a room there just for the purpose with a whole lot of tables where the couples to get married sit with their witnesses and the magistrates come around and read the vows and sign the documents.

On the day we arrived at 6.45 a.m…

Oh, so that’s why we didn’t get a walk. Some priorities.

Well, the courts open at 8a.m. so they are supposed to be finished by then. So, as I was saying before you interrupted; we arrived early and Felicity was there to pin on Marianne’s corsage and my buttonhole.

Hmm, I did notice you wearing some strange garments.

They are called a jacket and tie and were compulsory. You should have seen the others there – 3 piece suits for the men and full-on wedding dresses for the ladies. We had to wait around a fair bit and when we got into the marriage hall (though “hall” makes it sound a bit grand) we were seated at a table complete with a white table cloth, white chair covers and a satin cloth decoration. Then someone came past and asked us if we liked the colours. Marianne replied that yes, it was fine. Then we were asked to pay for it all! We brushed them off with the excuse that we hadn’t brought any money so the chair covers were unceremoniously pulled off the chairs and the table cloth removed and moved to where people would pay for them. It was only at 7h30 that the magistrates started doing the rounds, reading out the vows and signing the documentation. But first one of the magistrates welcomed us and told us how, if we wanted, we could get a divorce and even if our partner was unfaithful we could sue the third party!

What a way to start.

The couple in front of us had a really good magistrate who looked like she actually enjoyed what she was doing and went out of her way to make the ceremony memorable but our magistrate was bored before he even started and stuck rigidly to the text. Marianne got the giggles and I forgot her names.

How could you do that?

Well, Marianne is not her first name it’s Debera and the magistrate was using her surname first which was a bit odd for a marriage ceremony. After we’d signed the various certificates we had to put our fingerprints on one of the forms and there was nothing supplied to wipe our fingers on.

I’d have used the tablecloth.

Well we didn’t pay for one but fortunately Marianne had tissues. Then we had to get out of the way for the next couple.

What, vacate the table?

Yup but it gave us time to watch the other goings on. Couples were kissing for the camera and posing by false wedding cakes.

Geez, that sounds about as romantic as a day at the cattle dip!

Well we did have a celebratory breakfast afterwards at Valdemeer’s restaurant opposite Arundel shopping centre which was fun. A few close friends and then the reception will be in February.

Lots of guests?

I haven’t counted but yes, I think there will be quite a few.

Lots of food of course.

Yes, I thought you would anticipate that angle.

Hey, us Ridgebacks have our priorities right!

Wedding breakfast

Wedding breakfast