I've returned from my long weekend. I know that's very exciting news for y'all.
Let's see...what happened while I was visiting South Bend for the last 4 days...
Well, I had long, drawn-out conversations with the boyfriend's dad that ranged in topic from Jesus Christ and his Truth to what streets are being closed/being opened around the Notre Dame campus. The man doesn't know how to filter, is the thing. The Jesus convo started early on Thursday, not long after we all sat down to party and have some ribs and beers in celebration of the boyfriend's birthday. His dad seemed to already be a bit tipsy by the time 6 p.m. rolled around, but I can't be too sure of that. Whenever he starts preaching to me about J.C. and this "truth" thing he believes in, he gets very glassy-eyed and weird, so it might not've involved alcohol in any way, really. Anyway, his mom and her friend saved me after about 40 minutes of me trying to get a word in edgewise, and I sat inside with them and had my beers with the girls instead of the boys while we waited for dinner to be completed. The rest of the weekend consisted of people doing their best not to leave me "stuck" with him alone for too long, even though I really don't mind his talks, I just wish he'd recognize when he's lost his "audience" so that he can wrap them up a bit better. Friday, it was a discussion about Thomas Jefferson, and Saturday we were too busy for anything to really get discussed, thank goodness, but he did manage to give me a little informative lecture about the street closures around the regional airport as we drove to the reception hall for the reception part of the wedding. Riveting.
Friday night was the rehearsal dinner, for which I came vastly unprepared not knowing it was going to be held on the mother of the groom's farm instead of in a restaurant. So I wound up wearing jeans and flip flops, of all things. The jeans were fine...even the flip flops were ok, dress-wise. It was the problem that it was raining for a good part of the evening, so the mud and wet grass kind of made me feel icky is all. No matter...the food was good, I had bug spray to keep the mosquitos at bay, and when we were done there, I was invited to join the groom and some of his groomsmen when they went out to a bar for drinks. It was a fun night. The groom is just such a funny guy! I felt lucky that they asked me to join them, honestly.
Saturday was a big mish-mosh of a mess. I was wearing, by far, the dressiest dress outside of the wedding party and the mothers of the groom and bride. It was cute, though, and as I've always felt that one can never be too overdressed, I felt fine about the dressyness (dressiness?)of it overall. Plus, my boyfriend was gonna be in a tux all night long, so if I stayed near him for the rest of the time we were at the party, then I'd look normal, I figured. But first, I went over to the church to help him mom set up the flowers (she did them in silk as a wedding present to the bride and groom), and then we had to race back to the house to get ready for the ceremony, which sucked because 3 of us needed to take showers all at the same time, and I needed to put on makeup, so yeah. Blech. But we pulled it off, and the ceremony was lovely and the priest was funny and poignant and said some stuff that made me go, "I hope the boyfriend is listening to this, dammit!" and we finished with that and went home to hang out for a few hours.
When we got to the reception, I finally saw the boyfriend, but it seemed he didn't see me. He took off to a room where the wedding party was waiting to be announced before he even acknowledged my presence. Two minutes later, as we waited in the drink line for drinks, he popped up again looking for his tux jacket. For some reason, his little brother had put it in the car, and he sent him out to get it. Again, he ignored me, but I figured he was being pressed by the wedding party to get back to the prep room, and let it go. Then I got carded for drinks, and the guy sent me to get my ID. My boyfriend's mom stayed on line, though, asked for a gin and ginger (which was what I was going to drink, and she thought she'd give it a try) and the bartender asked her how many she needed, 2 or 3? He had just turned both myself and my boyfriend's brother away for a drink since neither of us had our ID's on us, and apparently, he was fine with giving her 3 drinks instead. I was pissed for a bit, but I let it go after a while. I know I look younger than I am, but I don't look younger than 21, for fuck's sake. That's just craziness.
Finally, we were being served dinner. It was yummy Polish fare, and was very filling and tasty. After dinner, I saw the boyfriend leaving for a cigarette. As he did, one of the bridesmaids stopped him, pulled him down to her, and she kissed him on the cheek. As she is one of the sisters of the groom, I understood that she was just happy to hang out with him again after all these years and let it go. I had an extra pack of cigarettes in my purse that he had asked me to bring to him, so I thought he'd take this opportunity to come say hello, tell me he thought I looked pretty, and then invite me outside to hang out with him and his brothers. Nope. He just walked outside, and I got PISSED.
So. I got up, told his mom that I was about to give her son a little bit of hell, and walked out the door to ask him what the FUCK his problem was. I saw his brother when I was on the way out, and he asked me if I could get the extra cigarettes that I'd brought for the boyfriend from home, I looked at him with fire in my eyes, said, "No," very shortly and irritatedly, and then walked outside to see the boyfriend. He felt bad, I could tell. But then he started slurring at me about how much he loved me and how pretty I looked and I realized what the problem was. He was wasted. I should have known better after the best man's "speech" but I didn't think the boyfriend would be stupid enough to drink too much after the big breakfast of 3 eggs he had that morning, which was all he ate until dinner time. I overestimated on that, though, and he had consumed many beers, loads of champagne, and some fucking Hot Damn that an Irishman in the grooms party had picked up somewhere along the way. They were passing it in the limo. Classy.
So, he came in after my releasing of issues, sat down next to me, and again slurred into my ear about how he loves me. I was disgusted, though, and asked him to please get himself some water, we had a LONG night ahead of us of dancing and bouquet and garter tosses and cake cutting, and he needed to sober up for chrissakes! I asked him if he'd had enough food, or if I could get him something else, and he said he was fine...got some water, and we hung out and chit chatted a bit more. The best man had already made an ass out of himself (even though it was sort of funny at first, it wound up being just sad in the end...) and I didn't want to become the second casualty of the night by having Polish food and Hot Damn thrown up all over my chiffon dress while we were dancing to the music later on.
Boyfriend sobers up quick, though. We danced and sat and chatted with his family and ate cake and had a lovely evening from then on out. And then I discovered why he was so drunk/why he was acting strange all evening.
I did not catch the bouquet...one of the groom's sisters (who is already engaged AND prego, by the way) caught it, and a couple of other girls I didn't know caught the extra bits - it was one of those fall apart bouquet thingies. I've never been big on tradition, though, so I didn't care, really. I went back to my table to sit with the family while the garter toss went off and was happy to see that the boyfriend had caught it! His friends know that he and I want to get married, though, so I just figured it was fixed and sat back to drink my drink and wait for him to return to the table.
But he was given a microphone instead, and then the DJ was saying something I couldn't hear over the loudspeaker, but I saw his little brother waving me over to the dance floor. I was all, "I can see it from here! Yay! He caught the garter...good job honey!" But something fishy was going on, so I got up and went over to the dance floor to see what was up, drink in hand. The boyfriend started talking about how he knows that we haven't known each other for very long...you know, the 2 weeks just seemed to fly by! (har har...) But he loved me very much, he said. And then he got down on one knee, whipped a little box out of his pocket, and asked me if I would marry him.
Ok, half way through the "speech" I knew what was going on and had my left hand clapped over my mouth and tried to keep from giggling too hard at the thought of it all FINALLY happening! I took the box from him, turned to hand my drink to his younger brother that was near by, thank God, and then opened it to see his grandmother's ring inside. I looked at him with my hand over my mouth again, nodded and dove at him to hug him all at once, if that makes any sense at all...I don't know how else to describe it. Everyone clapped and cheered, and I kissed him, and took the ring out of the box, and I think someone...maybe the bride?...told him to put it on my finger already, and then I turned to hug his mom who was crying near my right shoulder, and I asked her how she could keep it a secret all day? She told me, "Well, it was supposed to be a surprise!" It worked.
Apparently, the boyfriend (now switching to the fiance) had planned on just asking me at some point as we danced together. But the groom told him he had a better idea, and they hatched the garter-toss plan and then got pissed off their asses as they drove around town in the limo prior to the reception. So not only was my boyfriend nervous about just the asking part of the proposal (even though he knew my answer, it was still a nerve-wracking concept, apparently), but he was also nervous about doing it in such a flamboyant way, in front of everyone, ON TAPE, with a microphone. He did a great job, considering, and we did become "mini-celebrities" at the wedding for the rest of the night, but it was just perfect as it was.
So, that was a fun evening. Oh, and later that night, as we all (his parents, his little brother, him and I) all sat on the back porch drinking port and shooting the shit, we heard a terrible scream and a "BOOM!" out front of the house. I was worried it might've been a gunshot, not knowing what all gunshots sound like, especially so close at hand. But it turned out that some dumbass chick had driven her car into the van that the fiance's parents own that was sitting in front of the house. She then tried to back up, dragged the van with her, and realized she was stuck. She was ok, but the car was so wedged under the van, we couldn't figure out how to get them untangled from each other! They wound up getting a tow truck to come lift the van off the car, and they were able to drive it home without any problem after that. The girl's parents came to get her, and I'm not sure that any charges were being pressed or anything. She was all freaked out, and pretty lucky to be alive, actually, so I'm not sure whether she was drunk or just stupid or both. What she did was stupid (driving too fast on a narrow street, and didn't slow down when she needed to wait for an oncoming car to pass her, causing her to have no choice but to slam into the back of the van), but my father-in-law to be didn't really get the details too well put together, unfortunately. We were all a bit tipsy by then, especially after the port we drank, so it was hard to focus on all the stuff going on, it seemed.
So that was how my weekend went. I'm engaged now, and we're very happy. I can't wait to start planning, and need to make a list of all the things I think I'm going to need to do, so I can call the Big Papa and start discussing budget numbers. Yesterday he joked about being able to spare $2,000 right now, and I laughed and the fiance laughed when I told him what dad had said (because he knows me all too well), and then dad said, "Well, maybe $4,000." He's such a funnay guy...
Now I must look for some work to do, so I can get back into the swing of things around here. I wish I could have taken today off as well, and in hindsight, the boyfriend and I wished we'd made our plans to fly home today instead of yesterday (I was hurting yesterday morning, but he was TWICE as bad, I'm sure...), but we got some rest after we got back, had a nice night last night, and are getting back to normal as quickly as we can. He's going to get the puppy from the boarding place today, and I can't wait to see her! So, yeah...life is good. I'm feeling really, really good.