It was the big day today. Tim and Gabrielle were finally tying the knot!
Because we all had a role to play in this wedding, we all needed to be there earlier than others. My mum was helping with the food preparation so had to get to the church by 10am, while Aonghas was doing all the videography which meant he would be filming everything from the beginning of the day till the end, so he had to meet the bride and groom at their house by 9am. As for the rest of us, Hamish and I were part of the string quartet who would be playing music in the ceremony, so we had to get to the church by midday.
Hamish, my dad and I got to the church and we started setting up in the hall when the drama started though. Hamish's A-string broke! It's the second time in less than a week that his A-string had broke! We had to decide whether to quickly go out and buy a new A-string, or go all the way home to grab the other viola. My dad and Hamish ended up going all the way home to get the other viola since it would be too costly to buy just one string and a new string would be hard to tune in such a short time.
While they went off to get the other viola, I was tuning my cello when my bridge collapsed! It came as quite a shock as it made a huge sound! Luckily nothing broke and with Jenny's help I was able to put the bridge back up, and tune the cello properly.
By then we didn't have much time left and the wedding was soon about to start. Aonghas had only just arrived and was busy setting up all the cameras and audio equipment, while Hamish still hadn't gotten back. The wedding had to be delayed a few minutes for both of them. Hamish soon arrived though and it was all go!
We started off playing Humoresque in the background, before playing For Unto Us a Child is Born as the parents walked up the aisle. Finally it was Gabrielle's turn to walk up the aisle with her dad as Jenny, Richard and I played The Prayer.
We sang a couple of hymns before the minister spoke and his wife gave a heartfelt speech speech about Tim and Gabrielle's love for each other.
After that, it was time for the bride and groom to exchange vows. Tim gave his in Cantonese while Gabrielle gave her's in English.
Finally the minister announced them husband and wife, and the highlight of the wedding...time to kiss the bride! Everyone was cheering, especially all the young people watching from upstairs!
We played 'You Raise Me Up' as they signed the marriage register. Gabrielle then treated us to a rendition of Amazing Grace with Tim playing on the piano, before it was time for us to play the 'Hallelujah Chorus' as they walked down the aisle as husband and wife.
It wasn't too long till they came back in and took photos with various different groups. I was lucky and got to be in two group photos - the string quartet photo and the Oddfellows photo. I have to admit I've never seen Oddfellows dressed this nicely and formally! I was quite impressed!
Because Oddfellows were the last group to take a photo with the bride and groom, we were the last to get to the food! There was still plenty of food for all of us when we got there though, and my mum had saved a plate of food for me too! BONUS!!
The bride and groom mixed and mingled with all the guests before Gabrielle did the bouquet toss. The bridesmaid, Lilian, ended up catching the flowers (I missed out grrr) but she didn't get it without a fight! She was nice enough to share the flowers with the other girls though!
People started leaving soon, and because Oddfellows had to help clean up, we had to stay behind and do exactly that. The only problem was there were only a few of us! It was just as well there wasn't too much cleaning that needed to be done.
By the time we had finished cleaning up, it was 5.30pm and it was time to head on to the next venue - Si Chuan Restaurant for the wedding banquet!
Our family was seated at table 16, which was all the way in the far corner. I was seated next to Tommy and Harris, while I had Jenny, Angie and Nadine opposite me. Besides me though was an empty seat, so I was pretty much on my own for the night!
This was the first Chinese wedding banquet I'd been to, so it was quite different to what I'm used to at restaurants. Instead of ordering our own food, dishes trickled out throughout the night.
We got a quite a range, from meat to green vegetables to lobster and fried rice. There was even a edible bowl made of dry noodles with vegetables in it! We were all warned by Gabrielle at the beginning to pace ourselves!
While we were eating, Tim and Gabrielle started off the speeches and then invited their best man, bridesmaid and parents to give speeches. Because I was right in the corner right next to kids making heaps of noise, I had a hard time hearing what they were actually saying!
I didn't really have anyone to talk to for most of the night, but fortunately Jireh came over to my table to talk and entertain me! We even made the phrase
'I <3 U'
with the puzzles that were scattered across all the tables!
The night ended with Tim and Gabrielle going around to have a toast with each table.
I still can't believe they're finally married! They've been together for quite a while now and are quite a great couple. I wish them all the happiness for their marriage and hopefully it's a long, happy and fun marriage!
- Some photos courtesy of On, Nadine and Tim!