Thursday, 28 November 2013

Miami and the wedding of Jessie and Joe

We had been planning a trip over to the US to attend the wedding of Jessie and Joe for some time. As many of the closest family members were unable to travel due to age or other pressures, it became even more important that Marisol and I show up in Delray Beach, about 50 Kms from Miami in Delray Beach. To take advantage of a long trip we had also arranged to spend some time with Manjeet and our grandchildren in Austin and then to mosey on over to San Francisco to take up a long standing invitation from our very good friends Jerry and Margarita. More about that later.

Fortunately for us Iberia saw sense and changed our first connecting flight so that we would not have to rush over from one terminal to another in Madrid in less than 45 minutes with our hearts in our mouths and our wedding clothes in our left behind suitcases. By the time the depature date arrived we had been told that we would take an earlier flight and have plenty of time in Madrid. Turned out to be fortunate as our flight was 30 minutes late leaving Bilbao! We had still taken the precaution of packing our wedding outfits in our hand luggage, just in case.
Sangeeta, Marisol and I 
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We arrived in Miami to our waiting hire car and our trusted friend the GPS, without which we would probably be still driving around Florida looking for Delray Beach and our hotel, given the US romance with huge infrastructure of roads, with their service roads and endless possibilities of taking a wrong turn and be forever lost on the freeways. After a brief scare when our spanish GPS with our manually loaded US maps would not respond and finally sprang to life, we arrived at our hotel with an air of someone who knew what they were doing and where they were going!
Jasvinder, Birinider, I and Marisol
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The wedding was very special, where we caught up with many family folks who we had not seen in many a year, and some who we only knew from emails and had never met. A very intimate but very classy wedding held outdoors at a very nice venue. There was a fantastic attention to details right down to a tube of sun tan lotion amongst a host of goodies for guests arriving at their hotels.

The proceedings got off to a great start with the meeting of the two families the day before the wedding, where we got to spend time away from all the fuss with Joe's parents and some of the other members of their family. We hit it off with Joe's parents straight away and when it came out in conversation that they had been owners of a VW caravanette in their younger days, we began to warm to them even more, because we too had owned one when I first met Marisol. More common experiences emerged but as always too little time and we agreed to carry on the conversation by all available means.
Jessie and Joe's wedding ceremony
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Joe (the groom) is quite a fishing enthusiast so there were many elements of the wedding with the fishing theme. Notably the rings were delivered at the ceremony by Graeme, Jessie's little nephew, at the hook end of a tiny fishing rod! The ceremony was quite emotional with a quite a few tears shed by both the bride and the groom, and even the lady who officiated the ceremony.
Jessis and Joe with Jasvinder, Birinder, and family

Afterwards there were the usual photographs, and we had been invited to participate in a surprise for the bride and groom in the form of a routine where six couples did a short dance to a tune of their choice. It was meant to be mostly Bhangra music, however as we did not know any tunes, they let us dance to Jailhouse Rock! This caused quite a commotion and a video taken by Manjeet was seen by our contacts around the world.
At Jessie and Joe's home in Delray
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At South Beach

After all the action had quitened down, we spent a few days just driving around Miami and catching up on the touristic bits. The South Beach was a lovely place, however we found that the sea was a bit rough compared with Laredo, where we live. All in all there are a lot of rich people living in huge beachside homes up and down the coast, and the streets in Delray Beach were crawling with Ferraris and Lamborghinis and other expensive machines.

Not a bad place to retire to, if you have a healthy bank balance!

Soon it was time to say goodbye and onto our second stop - Austin, Texas.

See all the photos from the Florida trip