The sun was beating down and we were dressed in the same clothes we wore on our first date. We had just come from the marriage license bureau downtown in Las Vegas and we soon learned why Daffy Duck and Bugs Bunny always pictured an oasis in the middle of the desert. At mile marker three, the man soon to be my husband had developed a limp from a swollen knee and I had developed a wobble that resembled an old woman with two hip replacements. We soon learned why there once was a Mirage hotel, and we realized landmarks are not closer than they appear in the desert.
He had to help me down the dips in the sidewalk just to get to the next sidewalk or street corner. During one part of this adventure I literally had to hold onto a chain link fence down the main stretch of boulevard in Las Vegas while wearing high heels. During our walk, a woman looked at me and said, “Oh honey, just take them off! ” I couldn’t. There were questionable light poles used as restrooms in the night and gum on the sidewalk left over from the year 1953; possibly slapped out of someone’s mouth by Frank Sinatra himself. How did we get here? How did we get to this point?
Those on the outside might think this seems sudden. However, it isn’t sudden. We met over a year and a half ago at a best friend’s apartment warming party. It was before the friend and I had become truly best friends, it was the start of becoming “bests” in eachothers’ lives.
While our friend was occupied by her guests and room mate, another bestie who came with me to the party ventured with me into the crowd on the balcony to say hi to others and mingle. Thats when he approached.
He approached with a huge smile, freshly shaved head and an outfit in black with some punk rock features. My first thought when meeting him was, “He doesn’t match his clothes.” He was too friendly and too talkative to match his dark attire which normally is worn by those who wish to be left alone. His smile and attitude were a direct contradiction to his attire. He made myself and bestie feel comfortable in a room full of strangers.
As he continued to talk I couldn’t help but notice his beautiful eyes, and be bashful. I couldn’t figure out why he was paying so much attention to me until about two months later our mutual best friend clued me in to what was going on. She suggested he was single, which explained why he continually came through my check out line at work. I waited for him to give me his number, which never happened.
A series of events happened which lead me to move back home from St. Louis. It wasn’t until a year later from when we spoke at his birthday party we reconnected; again through our best friend.
This friend is how we wound up in Vegas. She invited both my groom to be and myself before we ever even started dating, to her wedding. He was going to be the photographer and I was going to be the bridesmaid. We didn’t know the other was invited.
Late in June I had an inside joke while texting with my St. Louis bestie. It was about men and my lack of luck thereof with them. Suddenly she texted back, “There’s always ______” . Did she just say what I think she said? I couldn’t believe it. Did he like me? Would he be willing to do a semi-long distance relationship? Would he even entertain the idea of dating a woman who wants to make comic books for the rest of her life while simultaneously becoming a boxer? Does he like silly women who sometimes are at a loss for words and speak in nothing but sound effects? When I say silly I mean REALLY silly…
Her reply, “Facebook friend him and find out.”
I nervously friend requested him. You all know that moment; the moment where you hesitate because you’re a little intimidated by someone for some reason, but something pushes you to friend them anyway. I hit send. The next morning I awoke to find he had accepted said request, and suddenly I had a few more hits on my blog than normal. He had been reading this blog, and replying. Suddenly we were emailing everyday as if we were pioneers on chuck wagons writing back home. Every time I read his emails in the morning I would blush and cover my face as if someone had actually heard the sweet things he had just written; that was a first for me. In fact I’m sure I was even blushing on lunch break when I would check my email then; my coworkers knew something was up and new.
Over the course of three months, the man that would become my husband and I joked about Vegas and getting married there. Whether our friend realized it or not she had planted the seed of thought since he and I went on our first date.
That first date lead us to wandering around trying to find the perfect destination in Vegas to get married at, the perfect scenic venue. We had to stop into a friendly little Chinese food diner just to get something to drink, we were tired and sweaty and many miles away from our desired location. Quite a few locals along the way spotted us carrying our papers and said congratulations. We weren’t married yet and were already acting like it apparently, which is a good sign if people can spot it blocks away…and again they probably also spotted the papers. We finally made it to the Bellagio. We wanted to get married in front of it because of the historical movie significance and because across the street was a gorgeous view of a fake Eiffel tower and hot air balloon.
We called the wedding place in Vegas that promised to pull up curbside and marry you on the sidewalk of your choice promising to get the scenic pictures you wanted against your favorite Vegas back drop. The place was booked until 9:30…P.M. We were so deflated, mentally and literally in a physical sense that I decided to finally take my shoes off and take it easy for a bit. We walked too far and too long to just not get married immediately. That is when we realized it didn’t matter where we got married, the important part is that we were getting married; to each other.
In a fit of tired genius my fiance called our hotel to ask if they could squeeze in a marriage ceremony for us at their chapel. They said, “Sure, when is good for you? We have a two thirty and four thirty available.” We asked for the two thirty appointment, and hopped in the next cab we could get. We couldn’t have asked for a better or friendlier cab driver. He imparted words of wisdom during our car journey, and wished us well. We made it upstairs to the chapel, we filled out our forms, and walked down the aisle together like two old souls. Then again maybe we just felt like two old souls because we had wandered seven miles in a city in the middle of a desert in dress shoes and high heels. As we hobbled down the aisle together, the imperfection of that moment is what made it perfect.
In the end, the next night we finally did get pictures in front of the fake Eiffel tower; while wearing more sensible shoes…which was another adventure in of itself.
What major event happened in your life, turned out better the way it did than you had originally planned?