On Saturday, March 16th, I had the opportunity to attend my second Argentine wedding! What a coincidence- I don’t attend weddings nearly as often in the U.S.! Maybe Argentina is a more romantic country, and simply being here increases your probability of receiving a wedding invitation (laugh track).
This time, I had not just one, but eight wedding dates: Osvaldo, Marcos, Maxi, Sandra, Romina, Kaitlyn and Mirta, all from El Arca! We attended the wedding of Ana, an occupational therapist and friend of the community who worked with Marcos during his first year living in the home in addition to volunteering in the workshop. I had met Ana once before, on December 25th of all days, when she visited the home to wish everyone (especially Marcos) a Merry Christmas!
This was not just any wedding. It took place in the countryside of Buenos Aires province in a small town called Valdes, a 3 hour drive from Boulogne, and the whole affair had a distinctly gaucho (Argentine-cowboy) flavor. The ceremony took place in a small, beautiful chapel with a rustic feel, and the groom enhanced the rustic ambiance by dressing like a gaucho himself! He wore high leather boots with baggy tan pants tucked into them, a red sash for a belt, a white dress shirt with a brown best, a bandana around his neck and a typical gaucho hat, which to me looks suspiciously similar to a French beret. Here he is with the El Arca caballeros (gentlemen):
Marcos, Dani, Osvaldo, Francisco and Maxi
As guests gradually trickled in and waited for the bride to arrive, an acoustic ensemble of guitar, voice, flute and drums serenaded us from the balcony. I was happy to recognize a few of the songs from previous masses I had attended with El Arca. Listening to the drifting, mellifluous music while sitting in that beautiful place made me feel like I was in a fairytale.
Ana, the bride, was the protagonist of this fairytale. She had a simple (by contemporary standards) yet ethereal look. Her wavy hair hung loose down her back and her dress was elegantly classic, with lacy cap sleeves and satin buttons. Here she is with the El Arca acogidos:
Maxi, Marcos, Ana, Osvaldo, Dani and Sandra
The experience felt even more like a fairy tale at the post-ceremony asado when the newlyweds arrived on horseback. A crowd of cheering friends and family members awaited them as they gracefully slid off the horse and into their celebration.
Unfortunately, due to schedule constraints, we were unable to stay at the party long. We stayed long enough to delight in the delectable cheese and bread appetizers and the more-than-filling Argentine asado, though! Then we headed back to El Arca, cosily huddled together in the van. All things considered, it was a lovely outing! I feel so blessed to have shared this day with such a great group of people.
Here are two more photos from the wedding that I really like:
Marcos, Romina, Mirta, me and Sandra
Kait and Osvaldo
by Lisa R. April 6th, 2013
by Lisa R. April 6th, 2013