Tobago

Tobago
Horizon at Sandy Point

Sunday, April 17, 2011

A wedding

My son would say his mother is getting sentimental in her old age! But there are worse things. The wedding of a friend - rather a friend of the same son - provided a couple hours to pause to reflect how fast thirty years - a generation, a new generation - have gone. A snap of the finger, a wink of the eye, and here we are, older ladies and gents, witnessing self-possessed grown men and women pledging themselves in commitments like marriage - and yes, parenthood - already!

It's a morning wedding on a Saturday. A time and occasion that Trinis may have grown out of. Morning weddings call up floral short dresses and hats on ladies; casual and comfortable men's attire. Kenneth, his father and the best men sport cool khakis and white shirts that fit the setting, the open decks and poolside of a home thrown open to overlook the northern range, sloping to the sea merging at its horizon with the sky. The bride in a simple strapless ivory gown.

The "I do's" take place on a platform at one end of the pool. The videographer is having a field day. Every shot would have magnificent rainforest or seaward scape in the background! But there are conversations and reminiscences taking place in every cool corner. On the couch, the grandmother, a sprightly 93, and the aunties. On the porch, the new English family - Roxanne's sister and friends of the couple from Kent.

Apollo and Anjini talking about their three-month old son, Apollo Jacob. What a change a baby makes! Yes, we know, we smile and recall our own "new parent" escapades, putting a three-month old son into the pool (will he sink or swim - he sputtered and barely kept his nose up), a daughter down the islands (and a sea bath) at one month.

Christopher and Matthew - two loving boys, ahem men! - and Auntie Ann, still training for water polo and a match that's going to take place in Saudi Arabia. Konata, with locks, dapper in white with black waistcoat, getting ready to leave, but staying to the end.

The Music School's band, in which Ari plays saxophone, provides lively jazz interpretations of old favourites. Oye Como va! Greensleeves for the couple's first dance. Rudder's Calypso Music.

There's way too much food - what else is a feast? Fish, shrimp, pastelles, roast beef, barbecued chicken, pork, salads. Best of all were Lorraine's chip-chip sugar cakes, crunchy and gingery.

Time to say something for the bride and groom for their video, which they will look at every anniversary, and chuckle, and laugh at, as the years pass.  Of course, we wish them well, many years of being together. A significant memory? Kenneth has always been around, almost as long as my own son, I see him through the son's eyes. But here he is, his own person, a different path, and all our hopes go with him for an interesting and enjoyable life, filled with love.

So yes, where did the last 27 years go? From the time he was placed on my chest, a squirmy, vulnerable, unarmoured bundle of flesh, to the man who thrives in a faraway country, whose friend is taking this important step, we hope his stories are interesting ones, and that he doesn't hold too much against his parents! So many stories to be re-told. And the stories are different from every side.

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