August 11, 2011 by wcobserver
A few weeks ago I went on vacation and did something that very few people do. If you guessed bungee-jumping or skydiving, I’m guessing we’ve never actually met. Most people can tell, within five minutes of meeting me, that I’m not what you’d call a thrill-seeker … or even, say, the outdoorsy type. My idea of adventure involves catching an episode of Man vs. Wild. Seriously … once you’ve seen a man drink his own urine from a snake’s skin … well I think you’ve pretty much experienced everything the world has to offer.
But in spite of that gripping life philosophy, I am, in fact, spontaneous … which typically includes more of a climate-controlled environment than … adventure. The other great thing about spontaneity is that sometimes the best parts of life are the ones we didn’t see coming. So in mid-June, my sweetheart and I packed up a borrowed car bound for New Mexico, and without any fanfare or … really even a loose plan between us … we decided to elope.
Now when I say we didn’t really have a plan, I don’t mean we were completely flying by the seat of our pants. We knew we were going to Taos and staying at a friend’s condo. We even knew we were going to getting married. It was the details we were fuzzy on … like who’d perform the ceremony, where it would be, or which day we’d make it happen. In other words, I’ve made sandwiches with more preparation.
On the other hand, I can’t think of a better way to start a marriage.
First of all, we had a 13-hour drive to chat about our vows, finding a person to officiate and other Earth-shattering decisions like whether or not we should order a cake. A road trip like this is also a great opportunity to see how both people react in all kinds of situations … since a 13-hour drive …adding in the wind chill factor … feels like a lifetime.
As it turned out, it’s remarkably easy to get married without a lot of advance planning. Thanks to the internet, and a couple of trips to town, we were able to get our marriage license and even coordinate all the little extras to make the event special in just three days. By Thursday evening at sunset, we were standing in a shady clearing, exchanging rings and meaningful vows that we had written for one another. We had flowers, a photographer, an incredible officiant, and plans for a celebratory dinner, which not only overlooked the mountains … but as it turned out … was one of the tastiest meals I have ever eaten.
A private impromptu wedding isn’t for everyone. But marrying the right person isn’t really about the wedding anyway. It’s about the marriage. It means knowing everything about another person and still seeing perfection. It means never being afraid. It’s the security that comes with patience, loyalty and trust. The right person doesn’t just ignore your quirks … he loves them. The right person sees the truth when the rest of the world is blind. The right person is your person … and yours alone.
You probably won’t elope on your next vacation. But if you’re thinking about it, don’t let plans – or the lack of them – stand in your way. The most memorable moments are often the ones that have a life all their own.