Every family has their traditions. Some traditions are centered around holidays, birthdays, and yes, weddings. I met an absolutely lovely couple that asked me to perform their wedding ceremony at a local art gallery. We met the day before the ceremony for their rehearsal and to go over any last minute details that needed to be taken care of.
Everything was set. Everyone in the bridal party knew their role and where they were to stand during the ceremony. Our beautiful bride neglected to give me one piece of information though.
The bride’s family had an uncle that they would later describe as “colorful.” Several years before her uncle had acquired a 6 ½ foot tall fiberglass statue of an English Beefeater. Any time the family would gather for the holidays, birthdays, graduations, and such, the Beefeater would make an appearance.
As I arrived to the ceremony site on the wedding day, the groom met me in the foyer. He proceeded to tell me a little of the family tradition and that our fiberglass guest would be tucked away at the back of the venue—out of sight!
Guests by the dozen poured into the room and took their seats, with anxious anticipation of the ceremony beginning. As the first groomsman started down the aisles there was a flurry of movement and the “colorful” uncle emerged from the back of the venue wheeling our Beefeater down the aisle in front of the groomsman. He slid our fiberglass guest into the position of an additional groomsman and then took is seat, as if nothing had happened. The remaining groomsmen entered the ceremony site and took their respective positions just as they rehearsed.
When the groom entered his attention fell to the Beefeater and when get got close enough to me he asked “Who put that thing up here?” Without as much as a word I motioned to the “colorful” uncle. A scowl of displeasure appeared on his face for but just a moment and then his bride entered the room. When the bride saw the fiberglass guest in his place amongst the groomsmen she laughed out loud and after a private exchange of words with her groom they were both smiling as I pronounced them husband and wife.
Not a picture of the bridal party was considered complete; until they made sure the Beefeater was in the shot.
And it all happened down the aisles