Cindy and Josh, from out-of-state, had a destination beach wedding at one of our oceanfront hotels. I hadn’t had the opportunity to meet them prior to their wedding day and found them as delightful as their phone calls and emails had indicated they would be. They were exuberant, warm and funny people. This was, however, one of those occasions where I desperately needed the wedding to start promptly because Josh and his groomsmen were hanging out in the bar. They weren’t sloppy, but they were definitely making a beeline to rowdy. Up in the hotel suite, Cindy and her bridesmaids were not far behind. This was a wedding party with a party attitude.
When all was said and done, the wedding itself was not particularly remarkable. That’s actually a good thing, because when there is something to remark upon it’s usually because something went wrong or someone did something embarrassing. Cindy and Josh had a perfectly normal ceremony. They didn’t have anything to remark upon until later, as in the next day later.
Once it has been signed by the officiant, anyone may return the completed license to the courthouse for certification and filing. I encourage couples to let me take that responsibility because I know the process, my children are on soccer fields almost next door to one of our county’s courthouses almost every day of the week and, all right I admit it, I’m a bit of a control freak. I prefer to know for certain the license was filed within the required ten days following the ceremony. I give couples a choice and most do opt to have me return the license to the courthouse, thereby saving them one more task. Cindy and Josh wanted to do it themselves.
On Monday, I received a phone call from Cindy asking me where I had put the license when I was done with it. I told her Josh had asked me to give it to him. Fifteen minutes later another slightly more panicked phone call, “Josh can’t find it. Did you see what he did with it?” I told her I hadn’t, but if necessary I could meet them the following day at the courthouse located near the highway on their route home. She told me they would look some more and get back with me. I kept my cell phone by my side knowing it would ring before the afternoon was over. Within an hour, we made an appointment to meet at the courthouse first thing Tuesday morning so they could be on their way.
I had difficulty reconciling this contrite young man with the playful groom of Saturday evening. Josh could not look me in the eye and then Cindy started in with “tell her, you have to tell her.”
Josh mumbled, “I found the license.”
I was wondering why they hadn’t called to let me know it wasn’t necessary to meet them at the courthouse if they'd found it when he pulled a grey ball from his pocket and handed it to me. He had obviously found what used to be the license. I can imagine the look on my face, raised eyebrows and a questioning smile, because he blushed and blurted out the details. After I had given him the completed license he had jammed it in his pants pocket and then forgotten about it. A memory that might have come in handy when he decided to cavort in the ocean waves with his groomsmen after the formal picturing taking was over. A party indeed! Once again proving beyond any reasonable doubt, the combination of salt water and paper does not lend itself well to scanning and copying.
And yes, we got them a new license and everything worked out just fine!
Photo Attribute: Cheryl Clermont, Space Coast Photographer
This particular wedding party is NOT the couple in the story.