My only slight concern is what visitors might think. Will they imagine that we have sprinkled it as some sort of decoration, or might they think that we sprinkle it onto ourselves? I believe that I have seen sparkle on the faces of young women who have been to a disco. Well I very much doubt that any disco around here would admit this grubby looking pair of pensioners, no matter how much they and their flip-flops sparkled.
Somehow or other the photographers of our local town have learned that our house is open for post-wedding photography. Probably five times a year we have a long limousine decorated with flowers stop outside our house and from it emerge (tarat-ta-taaa!) The Bride and Groom. From another car behind comes a photographer draped with at least two large black Nikons. They have stopped to make photographs in and around our house. Now I hasten to inform you that we do not live in a grand mansion, no Graceland, no Southfork; we live in a quite modest old stone cottage that we have gradually restored over the years. It might be described as a bit “chocolate-box” I suppose, but that’s about all.
Anyway, the happy couple is then photographed at the side of the house, at the front of the house and in various rooms inside of the house. (We feel a little insulted that our garden seems to be of no interest.) Indoors, standing in front of the bookshelves is a popular spot; rather like a politician on the television giving the impression that he is an intellectual despite the drivel he may be broadcasting. The final few photographs are of The Bride and Groom together, waving from the little window in the gable end, the photographer down in the road. All this amid a certain amount of excitement and choruses of congratulation from Frau, me and whoever else may be present. It should be noted here that The Beautiful Bride in her sparkly dress has a beam of about two meters while any passages in the old quaint cottage, including the stairs, are less than one meter wide; thus all this is taking place within a constant shower of sparkle from The Bride.
Sparkle is light, it does not drop so much as it drifts, and so it lies not only on all the floors, carpeted or otherwise, but also on almost any surface below about waist level. We would welcome weddings more just before Christmas.
The details of your wedding
May I mention our own wedding again? Forgive me if I’m boring you. Die Frau was certainly not going to dress in a two-meter-diameter white gossamer gown but chose instead a simple red dress, which I think might be called a “shift.” (Interestingly, I see that the word also means “a deceitful or underhand scheme of things”; very interesting.) Frau invariably wears a hat so her shift was complemented by an unremarkable straw hat. The wedding was in September and few flowers were available to decorate the hat; so it was that she opted for a string of red peppers where the hat-band might normally be. The effect was fine, the white gown would have been a fraud and, as the wedding was on top of a mountain up which Frau was to ascend on a white horse, most impractical. She looked smart enough, the groom had real shoes on and the jazz of the peppers somehow suited the pair. We later learned however that the village ladies had convened in several clandestine meetings, both on the day and on following days, to decide the exact significance of the red peppers. We have never heard what the official verdict was but we believe that there was speculation that peppers are thought to be an aphrodisiac in Europe, that peppers ward off vampires and that peppers are an anaphrodisiac. I will not opine.
Frau and I have sometimes thought about expanding our services and offering to organize full weddings. The trouble is that we have not reached a consensus about which way to go. She favors “genuine” village weddings, but I think that we should be a bit more glitzy. We have a friend living locally who is a very good Elvis impersonator, there are several very large American cars around the town and we have an American pastor. I offered to go to Las Vegas to research the wedding industry over there. I could film a dozen or so of the most over-the-top weddings and design a package incorporating the best features of all, but definitely including Elvis. Unfortunately, Prince Harry spoiled my plan and my trip no longer has Frau’s approval.
Darn it! I just googled “Turkish Weddings” and discovered that we’ve been beaten to it. There are dozens of companies offering fully organized weddings in Turkey; many in our vicinity. There are some wonderful locations, most being on a beach. A beautiful white draped gazebo sort of thing may be set up with a white draped table complete with fresh flowers in the shade beneath. Nearby will be seating for the guests.
The Chinese turn out about 1.5 billion cheap plastic chairs every year, most readers will own at least one or two. They leave the Chinese factories having cost about $0.5 each, but by the time they reach a consumer in Turkey cost a full $8. They start life looking very smart and are sturdy and comfortable enough to serve well in the garden or terrace of any house. Unfortunately they deteriorate very rapidly being constantly assaulted by sunlight and the burden of the overweight and of fidgets. It is estimated that 10 percent lose a leg within the first year and that 5 percent of the three legged live on for a further 11 months. The average life-span for all chairs is 5.5 years.
The Chinese plastic chairs may be rented out by the hundreds for Turkish weddings whether the wedding be a traditional village affair or a posh tourist job on the beach. The big difference, though, is that for the former the chairs are used naked, whereas for the latter the chairs are fully clothed. Somewhere there are factories turning out hundreds of beautiful chair-frocks every month. Most seem to be white and frilly but embellished by cloth flowers or bows in a lovely color. Pink is very favored, but we’ve seen a deep purple version and also gold. Clad in their wedding frocks, only the ankles of the Chinese product may be discerned, and one might think that the guests were being congregated rather grandly on throne-like seats. There are currently no statistics available for the number of chairs that lose a leg actually during the course of wedding services or of the resulting casualties.
I urge readers to look at the photographs on a few of those Turkish Wedding websites, and I’m sure you’ll agree that the wedding settings look fantastic. We have not yet attended any of the ceremonies, but I am sure that they are wonderful. I only have a couple of minor criticisms. Maybe my taste has changed after living here so long, but I find those European wedding gowns a bit too conservative for my taste, and not one of the web-site photos show them to have even a hint of sparkle. My other criticism is that none of the sites that I visited offer an Elvis impersonator.