On February 28, 2009, Laura and Damian tied the knot during a lovely ceremony in a little park on Coronado Island overlooking San Diego Bay.
They were the second couple in the next generation of their family to tie the knot, after Laura’s brother Antony and Courtney tied theirs, also near San Diego, in 2003.
It was also the second wedding in winter, but in San Diego the seasons matter very little: it’s almost always warm enough during the day.
By way of an aside, none of our children married during the course of this volume of memoirs, which makes sense in that the oldest, Nick and Daphne, were 23 and 22 respectively when the parents separated. In addition, none of them were even talking about marriage seven years later, when they are starting to hit the more normal age these days.
Back to the narrative: the Nashes are my family, sister Sue, her husband Derek, and Antony and Laura: more on this page.
I took the only pictures of the happy couple on this page. There should be many more of them: the able wedding photographer followed every step of the proceedings, and took pictures throughout each step, with the effect that there were hundreds to chose from. And I duly went through them all – it took hours, literally – and picked the 15 or 20 that appealed the most.
Then when I tried to confirm the order on line, something went wrong, and I lost the complete selection as well as the order. I would tell myself to go through the whole process again, but the frustration with losing the first order delayed things, and then the photos were no longer on line. My apologies!
Our entire family was invited to the wedding, which in retrospect may have been a mistake for those paying for the reception: seven of the eight of us actually showed up! The only absence was Tom, who had been living since the beginning of 2008 at his mom’s apartment in Paris and whose absence was thus excused, if still regretted. It was regretted even more because of the great photos that Janet, the wedding photographer at www.purelycaptivating.com, took of the rest of us!
Just as we must have added significant cost for Sue and Derek (thank you so much, guys!), we had our own logistical issues getting everyone down there. The Suburban, which could have driven us all in comfort, was long gone. As were the days when the older children (now in their early 20s) could easily spend a day each way driving with the parents.
Trying to keep everybody happy, Marie-Hélène and I ended up flying down with Alex and Charlie, and Nick, Daphné and Alban drove down in the Volvo. Our departure itself was quite a production. We wanted to ensure that each of the children, including the older, had a respectable outfit: there’s not much call for respectable outfits for students in California! We first bought the requisite items – almost everyone needed a blazer or jacket, for example, and a few needed presentable dress shoes – and then carefully packed them all before leaving. Almost all the garment bags were driven down in the Volvo, to ease our flight.
But it worked, almost: everyone had everything they needed, except somehow in all that organizing my garment bag was left behind in Santa Cruz: oops! I grouched my way to a local Kohl’s and restocked before the wedding.
After contending with all these logistics issues, we unsurprisingly managed to arrive a little late to the Friday evening entertainment, the rehearsal dinner, hosted by the bride and groom in their home just south of San Diego. But the party was still bopping, there was still food, and there may even still have been a little something to drink!
We had seen the Nashes more rarely after they all moved to San Diego in around 2002, following Antony to his first job after law school – they had been living in Foster City, which is drop-in distance from us in Santa Cruz – and had never met Damian even though he and Laura had been dating and living together for quite a while. So we focused on Damian and his family, at the rehearsal dinner and then at the reception. Unfortunately, I did not take many pictures, expecting to order them from the wedding photographer directly.
Meeting Damian’s family (especially Uncle Bryan from Oklahoma!) was a real pleasure. We were at our own family table at the reception, and they were at theirs, but various among us wandered around and mingled and danced. It was a delightful reception, following a charming and unpretentious ceremony.
We returned to the Hotel on the bus kindly provided for the wedding party. Well, not all of us. Alban, Daphné and Nick continued their evening by going out with their cousin Antony (I think that Courtney wisely passed on this one!), in various bars and clubs around San Diego. We don’t know many of the details, which is definitely a good thing! There were some odd stains on a jacket or two that we noted the next morning, and they all had a very difficult time getting up.
Brunch at the hotel, the Loews Coronado Bay Resort, on Sunday morning was, not unsurprisingly, a bit of a sorry affair. It was very much the morning after. Nick, Daphne and Alban each made an appearance rather late and a bit grumpy, almost as if they were hungover. Well, two of them were over 21!
Then Charlie and Alex turned to the lovely hotel pools, and the older children followed them over there, and all of a sudden the children were all playing together, I was taking pictures, and everybody’s humor improved. Nothing ever engaged the older children like their little brothers.
They of course found a game to play together in the pool. It started with Nick launching each of Alex and Charlie into the air to splash back down into the water. Alban took one look, and launched himself into the pool with them and then jumped in with them to join in the launching. And so it went on.
Thanks again, Sue and Derek! Congratulations again, Laura and Damian! At last count, their union had already brought forth three children, Allie, Reanna and Devin!!