Monday, February 23, 2009

This Never Gets Old

It is easy to see who matters to you when you are 24, almost two years removed from college and everyone you know has a full-time job or is a grad student. You either both make the effort, or you don't, but everyone learns quickly that it is a two-way street.

My friend KJ was in town all last week from Providence, RI. Friday afternoon I booked it back from Dallas to our hometown of Suburbia, where she was waiting in the back of a restaurant in their lounge-looking bar. She had reservations with her parents for dinner, and I had dinner plans with friends back in Dallas, but for an hour we got to catch up on things better discussed in person.

When I told her that I had friends coming in town for the surprise engagement party of my sorority friend HA, she was immediately taken off-guard, because she doesn't regularly attend parties of that nature and zero of her friends are in the same boat... or ocean, for that matter. I often forget that it is not standard operating procedure for the rest of the United States to get married so young until I see that look on someone's face, again. That you're 24 and you've been to 14 weddings in two years?! look. I know it well. And to those people I am forced to admit that as of today, I have five more weddings on my calendar for this year.

Saturday morning, the day of the proposal and party, I met up with five college friends for brunch. After getting wired on three cups of coffee, two of the girls parted ways to go help with the proposal set-up. The other four of us made a trip to Northpark, breezing through Neiman's before parking it for a solid 30 minutes at Sephora, otherwise known as a woman's version of Best Buy.

I made the mistake of introducing the girls to my favorite vice in the world: a tall, skim caramel ice-storm with no whip from the E-bar at Nordstrom. Looking up from the cookbooks I was skimming in Anthropologie five minutes later, I saw my friend BF glaring at me with her empty plastic cup held high. "I can't believe you told me to try this. I hate you," which translates to: "this is delicious, you rock my world."

I took my friend AR to a gazebo in the middle of the Park Cities, where LB and CC were already there, trying to figure out the logistics of setting up the proposal from their list of instructions and wrap sheet of 20 things to do. That's right, 20. They wanted another opinion, so I parked and started inspecting the scene with them. They had the idea of wrapping white Christmas lights since none of the lights in the gazebo had been on the night before, so I suggested trying out the outlets before committing to that idea. Luckily AR had a CHI in her purse and we found that they did indeed work, and that HA would be able to fix her hair for pictures if she needed to.

Not that she needed it- when asked anyone would tell you that it's a toss up as to whether she looks more like Snow White or Belle from Beauty and the Beast.

The gazebo had trees outside of it, which had lights up in them, and I made the mistake of lingering in front of and wondering aloud if they could be turned on manually. My friends seized the opportunity and encouraged me to check- since I was the only one wearing "practical tree-climbing shoes." My favorite red Chuck Taylors, I found out, work well for examining landscape lighting. I got a boost from AR, and by boost I mean I stepped on her tiny thigh and hoped I wouldn't crush her. My efforts were fruitless, there was no way to turn on the light manually from the tree, and I ungracefully dismounted, managing to scratch up my fingers in the process. My hands now look like I lost a fight with a wall of sandpaper.

I was late to the surprise, after attending a birthday party, and there were 20 or so people still there, visiting when I arrived, but judging by the volume of empty champagne glasses I knew that many people who love the couple had come by with their congratulations. It struck me that no one can put an appropriate age on love or marriage. We should all be so lucky to have what they have at 34, what they have at 24.


"Oh, isn't this amazing?
It's my favorite part because you'll see
Here's where she meets Prince Charming
But she won't discover that it's him 'til chapter three..."
-Belle, Beauty and the Beast


Errant Gosling said...

I'm glad for the happy times, but I don't envy you the weddings. They're flying fast and furious around me, and I tire of them quickly, best intentions aside.

insomniaclolita said...

i have to go to lots of weddings too. Crazy! I hate the questions from people on when is mine going to be. I usually respond with a single word : ew. I love great weddings. But I hope i dont have mine any soon

erin - heart in ireland said...

I love that friends who even if only in town for a little bit will make the time to meet, especially when I've only been home for like 5 weeks in the last 2 years.

I'm still amazed by the number of weddings! But that is awesome that you've had a lot of little college reunions! And I love that your friend was carrying a Chi in her purse. Sounds like a fun afternoon! And I can't wait until my friends start getting married!

tootie said...

We had a dry spell of weddings, but we just went to one last weekend and we have 4 more to go in the next few months!!

(Thankfully, the weddings are of different social circles so I can wear the same dress or two to all ;)

Mrs. D said...

I love the quotes you put at the bottom of posts! So cute!