Yesterday I told you how my wife tricked me into falling in love with her by maiming me. Today I will regale you with a tale of how I nearly cripple both of us. Much of this tale will seem as though it is about to become R-rated, but I am hopeful of telling it in a manner that assures I remain on the family friendly side of the fence.
Hands up if your wedding night was memorable.
But is your memory of pleasure or pain?
Mine is about pleasurable pain – or is that painful pleasure.
Everything was what I consider normal during our courtship. The first date was September 14, 1990 – Kentucky Fried Chicken and a Tom Cruise movie. We enjoyed many similar outings during the subsequent 12 months. We had a great time, and hardly maimed each other after that first little episode.
We decided during July or August that we would get married. We spoke to her father and he didn’t try to shoot me. We then set about arranging two engagement parties. Yes two. One for the relatives and a separate one for friends – on consecutive weekends. I can’t remember whether the relatives or the friends were first but it was September 14, 1991. The same date as our first date. How romantic.
Our first date was a Friday. The engagement was a Saturday. We wanted the wedding to be the same date the next year but it fell on a Monday so we decided to move it to the next weekend. But that weekend was the start of spring school holidays. We didn’t want to be honeymooning with a beach full of other people’s children so we bumped the date another two weeks to the end of the holidays.
The wedding plans
I have 3 sisters. My wife has 3 brothers. Based on tradition this was the only free wedding my parents would be involved in. Similarly, this was the only wedding that my new in-laws would have to pay for. We invited every living relative from both sides. And most of our friends. Many of the relatives lived over a thousand miles away, including some overseas, so we were expecting about 50-60% attendance. I had one uncle who couldn’t raise the airfare from New Zealand. Aside from him, 99.3% attendance was achieved. This was going to be a big wedding.
Our local church was under construction, having resided in the local community hall for decades. We booked the yet to be finished church, but we also booked another church 15 miles away (and closer to the restaurant where the reception was to be held) just in case, as the community hall would not stand, let alone sit, the numbers we were expecting.
I think I lost about 5 pounds on the wedding day through sweat alone (fairly normal). Everything went like clockwork. The bride was (only) 15 minutes late. We were down at the beach by 5pm for photos and at the restaurant by 6pm. We managed to pack 114 people into a restaurant licensed for 95. The first $1500 on the bar disappeared in a flash. The second $1500 lasted until about 8pm. The third $1500 never got finished. Even with all that consumption there wasn’t a single scuffle. There wasn’t even a drunk, distant relative heckling during the speeches.
I nearly starved that night. The bridal party was served dinner at our table and then the guests were set loose on the buffet. Our plates were piled high with a range of seafood and salad. The first thing I grabbed (family friendly remember) was a crab claw. I grasped it in both fists and tried to snap it towards me like a twig. It shattered and in the follow-through I stabbed part of the shell into the fleshy part of my thumb – DEEP. Blood. Pain. I was crippled. I couldn’t hold anything with my right hand for the rest of the night.
It was a standard wedding. We danced. We talked. We drank. We ate (well, not me). We opened gifts. At about 10:30pm everyone formed a circle for us to say farewell. 112 hugs, handshakes and quick conversations later we were ready to go. Out and into the car which had been vandalised (in a traditional wedding manner) with shaving cream, confetti, streamers and condoms.
We drove away, relieved that we were finally alone after a very long, high-pressure day. We were grinning like a newly married couple. How clichéd.
Here comes the naughty bit
The hotel we were staying the first night of our honeymoon was only 3 miles away. It was a beautiful clear night. Our room was about 4 or 5 floors up and overlooking the water. We kicked off our shoes and I opened a bottle of champagne. We sipped and smiled and chatted on the balcony.
Eventually it was time to “be married”. We put our champagne flutes down and I swept my beautiful new bride up in my arms. I turned towards the bedroom and as we left the balcony and entered the unit I walked straight into a glass-top coffee table.
I somehow managed to NOT drop her through the table. The pain was amazing. The wedding night stopped right there. Out came the ice-pack and pain killers. It was nearly 3 hours before my shins (yes both) stopped throbbing enough for me to get to sleep.
The hero gets his girl
We were “married” early the next day and are still happily married to this very day. I am certain this one is a life sentence. Lock me up and throw away the coffee table.
When viewing the wedding photo I beg you to make concessions for the fact that it was the very early ‘90s when appraising the hair style. nikared is a sadist and wanted photos of my very special hair style. Remember, he is from Idaho, so please feel free to give him grief about how “current” that style is in his neighbourhood to this very day.
3 October 1992