Updated Every Monday, Wednesday and Friday

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Re-Compressing

Okay, I'm back. Thanks for waiting!

You know, now that it's all said and done, it's sort of funny to look back on it all and realize just how months and months of planning are rendered moot on the day.

I mean, to think of how much time (and arguing -- er, passionate discussion) went into the selection of our wedding music; The creation of a 3-CD set specifically timed out to take us through the peaks and valleys of our wedding reception - an intricately linked mix of English and Chinese music for all to enjoy.

And then to realize that our MC (gawd love'm) had ended up putting the CDs in and on 'shuffle' all night.

Thing is, we didn't even notice until late in the night... and by then we were too tired to care. Everyone was having fun and laughing and full-on involved in the event so who were we to get upset?

Perspective is funny like that - sitting there with it looming over us, these pre-conceived ideas of what was going to happen bearing down on our minds, it seemed like the whole thing could be a wash at almost any moment. But looking back, it couldn't have gone any smoother, the people that showed really were there for us and came with genuine smiles intact.

They say that no battle plan survives contact with the enemy and, I think, the biggest lesson of the whole thing was to learn that sometimes -- even on the most important day of our lives -- the trick of it all is to just go with the flow.

Of course the honeymoon was a whole other ball of wax.

We'd worked it out to spend 2 weeks in Hawaii - 5 days in Oahu, 8 days in Maui. We'd wanted to have the adventure throughout the first leg of the journey and relax all the way through the second.

Yeah that didn't happen.

Oahu was... insane. On the bright side we ended up using our Jet Lag to our advantage - off to bed by 9pm, up and out by 5am. From Pearl Harbour to Haunama Bay to Diamond Head (a massive crater) to Waikiki Beach we raced this way and that trying to see all that we could in the time that we had -- 5 days turned out to actually be 4 days, 5 nights as we had to hop a plane mid-day to Maui.

Oh, and I also managed to get a wicked 2nd degree sunburn on my shoulders on day 3 of it all. See, snorkeling is fun. Snorkeling at high noon in crystal clear water is even better. Loading up on sunscreen everywhere -- except your shoulders -- and then spending 2 and a half hours under the beating sun... yeah, not fun. Even less fun is having to talk down your well-meaning new wife from slathering you in Aloe lotion afterwards (even though you want it sooo bad). See, at a recent first-aid course that I took, sunburns was one of the things that they covered... and our teacher expressly stated that putting any kind of lotion/oil/gel on a fresh burn will make it worse.

So I suffered (boy did I suffer...) though it and came to learn, only a few days too late, of the awesome power of the 'rashguard' -- a UV-protected wet shirt that surfers, etc. often wear to keep them from burning up in the sun.

Huh.

On the bright side, wearing one of these allowed me to continue participating in the many, many water activities that followed (parasailing!)... but man I wish I'd known about them beforehand...

Maui was intended to be a more relaxed stay: Laying on Kaanapali Beach, relaxing, watching the waves crash on the sun-drenched shores.

Nope.

When we weren't driving 11,000 feet up the side of a Haleakala mountain, we were out hovering over the ocean via parachute or face down in it, snorkelling around Molokini, or under it when we were at the Maui Ocean Center (a massive aquarium with a tunnel where sharks swim overhead).

Turns out that the 'relaxing' part of our vacation boiled down to an hour laying together in a hammock, listening to the ocean on the day we were to go back to Canada.

Not that I'm complaining -- I'm ecstatic that our honeymoon was so adventurous... but man were we wiped when we finally made it home. It's taken me almost a full week to recover and I'm finally back to normal (I think)... but man, what a rush.

We've got around... oh, 40 gigs of pictures from the Honeymoon, plus about another good 50 or so from the wedding (thanks to family and friends)... so, yes, there will be many, many pictures. Once we sort them through I'll make sure to post an album or two or five.

Of course, now that I'm back and can actually focus again I find myself staring down the barrel of the CRTC and 3rd draft of my Chuck spec and a co-write (that I put off for waay too long -- sorry Dave!) and, well, trying to get an actual career up off the ground.

Things are going to be interesting.

But more on that later.

Cheers all!
Brandon

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

I'm Hitched!!

Wow, what a night!

Even now, with a couple days gone by, it's hard to to put it all into a single cogent stream of thought. From the rush of the ceremony to the whirlwind of being out into the world with my new wife, taking all sorts of pictures, being so proud as passers-by would stop to watch us or snap photos of their own.
--
I remember standing there in awe as she walked in -- I'd broken almost every 'rule' in the book in the months leading up to our day at the altar, and seeing her in her dress before the wedding was the most cardinal of all... yet standing there amongst my friends and family, watching her step out of the elevator and into the hall, my heart lept into my throat just the same.
--
That night, when we all came together for the reception - a room full of nervous energy, everyone trying to figure out what the hell they're doing. I'd forgotten my video camera in the car... a fact I wouldn't realize until a full hour after the reception had finished.
--
Sitting there, eating my dinner at the reception and hearing a GASP out on the floor from one of the guests. Snapping to the sound, I notice the room's gone silent and standing there in the middle of the room is my wife in a fitted red slimline dress. Hair up, massive sparkling necklace around her neck and completely unaware that everyone in the room was staring at her. I start to clap and it turns into a thunderous applause -- in her eyes I see the very first recognition that we're applauding for her.
--
Standing at the altar, overcome with emotion -- fighting to get out the speech I'd prepared and not being able to choke out more than a few lines: "These last 2 years have been the best days of my life and I can't wait to spend the rest of them with you". That's it. Except imagine them taking a good 2- 3 minutes to get out while fighting back tears... yeah, not my most manly-macho moment ever, but hey, but it was real and I'm not ashamed.
--
Watching our MC actually (and unexpectedly) knock it out of the park. He was more than a bit flaky in the pre-game, but man did he ever deliver in the clinch. Personable, friendly and a great performer overall I'm glad he came through for us, I just wish he'd been so enthusiastic earlier on in the process. To his credit he also brought in a friend to help MC in Mandarin at no extra cost. So.. yeah... all things said and done, no complaints about how it all went down.
--
Listening to my best man give a heartfelt and moving speech... about me... that had the room cheering. Thanks brother!
--
Dancing with Autumn, the 5 yr old lil' showstopper in red. She's going to be a triple threat, mark my words.
--
Swaying along to my dad's badass performance on the 12-string as he played a song that he wrote himself -- also his first time ever performing in front of a crowd. Though nervous as hell, he filled the room with his smooth sounds and earned every damn one of those claps.
--

There're a ton of memories swimming around in my head right now... and a ton more about to be made. As of 8am Wednesday morning my new wife and I will be off on our Honeymoon, spending two blissful -- and hopefully adventure-filled -- weeks in Hawai'i.

We've just picked up a newfangled underwater camera -- waterproof to 33 ft (or 1 Fathom, as my step-mom so sagely announced) -- so we're looking forward to putting it through its paces.

I'm hoping to do some parasailing, snorkeling and scuba diving... maybe spend some time in the shark cage... (this has already been shot down, but a guy can hope). Also: Going to go learn how to surf and hang out on the rim of a volcano... you know, for fun.

Anyways, I'll try to update while I'm over there, post some photos if I can -- twitter if I can't... Either way I'm expecting it to be a blast :D

Cheers all!
Brandon