It’s official, I am now a married woman. Our wedding was more beautiful than I could have ever hoped for, and we were extremely privileged to be joined by family and friends from all over the world. We chose the Shepherd Neame Brewery in Faversham, Kent as our venue, and it ended up being the perfect space for our day.
The Shepherd Neame Brewery is an institution in England, being the oldest brewery in England, and is well-known for it’s authentic ales and crisp lagers. The brewery is intimate with original wood beam ceilings draped with fresh hops from the year’s harvest. We didn’t need much in the way of decorations, the venue’s rustic beauty really spoke for itself. We settled on ‘vintage travel’ as a theme, and everything from our flowers made of vintage maps to our world map table plan, reflected this on the day.
Getting married in a country where you have little more than permission to reside, presents interesting challenges. The most obvious is that the majority of the guests were coming in from other countries. We had a handful of people from the United States, a good majority from The Netherlands (As the Dutchman hails from Holland country), my old college roomie came from Norway, and then we had our new friends who we have made since living in England. It gave the day a truly international feel, which is the best kind of feeling if you ask me.
An interesting aspect of the expat life (especially if your partner is from a different country as well) is that you have friends and family in many different groups. You have your ‘home’ friends and family. Your partner has his ‘home’ friends and family. There are the friends you made together while living in this country or that. And finally, the friends in the country where you currently live. These groups rarely, if ever, get together. Our wedding presented a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to blend each of these groups into one setting. Friends were having conversations that I never imagined would have the chance to meet. Our life that sometimes feels pulled and stretched into a million different directions, for one day was able to be still. I don’t think you could understand this if you haven’t lived as an expat for a length of time. This stillness, the satisfaction of having almost everyone in my life that I love dearly in one room, was by far the highlight of my day.
We won’t be getting our professional pictures for another week or so, but I will definitely share my favorites once we do. (All the ones you see are ones which were taken and posted by friends and family.) It is hard to believe that this girl who never imagined she’d sit still long enough to have a family is now a wife and mother. The three of us are incredibly happy and grateful for the support and love we have received from near and far.
Also, thanks to all of you who have been understanding while I left the blog to stand on its own for the last month. I am excited to be back and share my adventures with all of you again.