My favorite wedding photo…it’s impossible for me to pick just one. I always considered myself extremely unphotgenic. More likely, I was just shy and insecure. But my wedding photos were the first pictures of me I truely loved.
My Hubby and I eloped in Rome. Yes, Italy. We had been planning the normal “big” wedding thing — a ceremony by the water followed by buffet and dancing at my MIL’s club — and planned to honeymoon in Italy. Then I came down with a wicked case of cold feet. Not of marrying my Hubby, I had no worries about that, but the whole wedding biz was chilling me to the bone.
I didn’t want to pay $6,000 (over half my budget) for a decent photographer. I didn’t know over half the people on the guest list (Hubby has a bizarre extend family) and I refused to spend our day schmoozing with people I’ve never met and probably would never see again. Our day was suddenly about pleasing everyone else and I felt like a hired performer only there to make the audience happy.
My parents always encouraged me to elope, so when my Mom was actually concerned about what to emboss on the cocktail napkins (because apparently this is a big deal) I snapped. I suggested to my (then future) Hubby that we just ditch this whole big wedding thing and get married in Italy.
He said, “let’s do it.”
And then he proceeded to plan almost the entire thing.
How could I not marry him?
It was springtime in Rome. We were married in Santa Maria in Tempulo, a deconsecrated 11th century monastery in the heart of the city. Our brief nuptials were witnessed by five family members who were “forced” to take a European vacation to share in our moment. I’m still not sure what I promised to do that day — although our wedding planner, Gabriella, translated, the Italian matrimonial vows are far different (and much more modern) than the traditional American brand.
After the ceremony we traveled around the city on a photo shoot of a lifetime. We were posed in front of the Colosseum, Trevi Fountain, Spanish Steps, and around Campo di Fiore. Tourists stared and snapped pictures while the magnificent Gabriella cleared our path. I was so embarrassed to be the center of attention, truly a bashful, blushing bride. I can only imagine how many of the ubiquitous Japanese tourists posted their pics of the “Italian bride and groom” all over the internet. Somehow Pino, our amazing photographer, managed to capture only the brief moments I actually looked up.
Hungry and exhausted, we enjoyed a late lunch (and amazing Italian wine, of course) at a local wine bar before going back to our hotel to nap. That evening we celebrated at a divine trattoria in Trastevere.
It was small. It was unique. It was seeped in history and culture. It was absolutely perfect.
|He’s taking off my garter, but I always thought it looked like Prince Charming sliding on my glass slipper.|
It took several months for the thick, padded box covered with Italian air mail stickers to arrive. The leather album, filled with timeless treasures beyond my wedding day dreams, was worth the wait.
Now someday I just need to scan the negatives to keep these images alive (and far less blurry) forever.