the life of richie


Posted in is by Rich on September 20, 2009

Karen is wearing a skirt. This is how you know it is happening. That Caroline is getting married.

The day is one of those days in September when everything seems possible again; when you wake and see the sunny sun and feel the cool, fresh air and think, this is what life is; this is what it feels to be alive. Crossing over the dunes at the 58th Street beach, they see the wedding party assembled further along, where there is a small jetty and remnants of a pier. Her dad greets Karen and Rich; he looks so proud, so happy. Caroline looks radiant and blushing (which will later turn out to also be a bit of burning) in her thrift store dress. We come to bear witness; all of us, anyone welcome to the wedding, which is what a wedding should be: outside, public, democratic. There are people in beach chairs watching, strangers bearing witness; Golchehreh says, “It’s strange –– that there are strangers watching,” but Rich finds it very beautiful, too; and also “very Caroline”, who has always welcomed anyone into her heart, her life. “Caroline’s wearing flipflops,” Golchehreh smiles. The bride wore pink flipflops.

A boy with long hair plays the guitar while another plays the violin as the procession begins: Caroline –– coming over the dunes –– getting married. In nature –– it all seems so natural. So: two people –– meeting one judge and his family –– and their friends and family –– on a public beach –– on a perfect mid-September’s noon –– to pledge their troth. In the car on the way to the reception, the Richards in the front seat and the women in the back (mom, Karen, Golchehreh), mom says, “I like when they say in sickness and in health; I like that part about let no man put asunder; I like the word asunder.”

Karen adds, “And: I pledge my troth.”

“Yes! (I like that too.) It was so beautiful.” She is still crying, Rich’s mom (I still remember her from middle school parties).

At the reception, where there is much drinking and dancing, Moira begins her speech, “When Caroline and I were young, we never planned out our weddings. When we played Barbies, we never had our Barbies pretend to be marrying Kens. When we played Barbies, we always had adventures.”

Rich smiles. His friend Caroline –– married –– starting a new job working with Burmese immigrants in Atlantic County –– having adventures.

Karen says, “I can’t wait to read about this on your blog later.”

What blog has joined together let no one put asunder.