Episode 2: The Other Royal Wedding
The nuptials were to take place Friday night in El Reno, Oklahoma. Sister2 had rented a van so she and her husband, brother and his wife, and Laurie, Andrew and myself could spend the entire 4-to-6 hour drive together. I figured it was probably more 6 hours than 4 and that I was being given that range in an attempt to keep me from complaining. Like that would ever work.
Before leaving home I put together a collection of harmless, classic rock CDs that I figured would appeal to everyone. As the trip began people wouldn’t stop talking, but I figured even this group couldn’t go 4-to-6 hours of continuous talking, and that all my hard work in putting my CDs together would not go to waste. We eventually discovered that our rental van had satellite radio and, after much searching, settled on the “classic rewind” station.
Now, when I travel, I don’t mess around. Get there, and then you can go to the bathroom. When you travel with others, you have to put up with their ways. We stop at a rest stop and as we’re getting back on the road, I realize I don’t have my phone. I go back in the rest stop and look around to no avail. I’ve probably left it back at the house where it probably fell out of my pocket while sitting on the recliner. Happens all the time. Still, I don’t know for sure so I’m going to worry about this for the next 2 days.
We arrive at our hotel in Edmond, OK. Everyone wants to go visit the family at Niece2’s house, but I figure after 4-to-6 hours in the back of a van, someone deserves some pool time.
It’s a 45 minute-to-1 hour drive from Edmond to El Reno, because we haven’t done enough driving for one day. As we go through the 45th toll booth of the day, I decide that when I return home I’m going to write to my state legislator and demand that we enact a new law require the state highway patrol to pull over every vehicle that comes through Missouri with Oklahoma license plates and fine them. A large fine. And every time an Oklahoman drives past a state trooper, they should be fined.
When we arrive it turns out the main drag is closed off and there is a loud rock band playing. Turns out the wedding is competing with El Reno’s annual Hamburger Festival. A Hamburger Festival. Now we’re talking. We have 600 festivals every year in St. Charles but not one is a Hamburger Festival. I need to talk to the Chamber of Commerce.
The wedding site was decorated in a variety of nerd stuff — Star Wars, Game of Thrones, Dr. Who, Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings…everything but superheroes. How can you be so nerdy yet leave out the greatest of nerdy things?
The Hamburger Festival had agreed to put the band on hold for the 30 minutes it would take for the ceremony. Of course, ceremonies never start on time so the band started kicking in the jams just in time for the minister (who happened to be the groom’s brother) to have to shout the final prayer.
It was a lovely, and very nerdy, affair. The little ones were dressed as hobbits, the minister was dressed as Dr. Who, pop culture references were abundant. I didn’t understand many of them but I suspect I was not alone.
The post-wedding dinner spread was pretty awesome. There was pulled pork and chicken, various fruits and vegetables, mac and cheese, and baked beans. And best of all, no waiting for your table to be called. Just get in line, eat, get back in line. The way God intended wedding receptions to be.
All in all, a good night. Nice ceremony, good food, enjoyable evening with the family. Yep, nothing could go wrong.
“Hey, sorry I won’t be able to take you to the comic book shop tomorrow. It’s George’s first T-Ball game in the morning so we gotta be heading home.”
Episode 3: The Pioneer Woman Menace