I took a brief blog break because I went to my nephew’s wedding in Barbados. It was an utterly beautiful time. Over sixty friends and family had flown there to celebrate. I was skeptical about a destination wedding, but the lovely unexpected thing is that we had several days before the wedding to hang out, get to know each other, and create a little community of support for the couple. So rather than a group of relative strangers coming together, we were a Bajan-infused, sun-drenched, sea-blessed group of celebrants.
A lot of my work is quiet, solitary and relatively unscheduled. I am not particularly a group activity kind of person. The exception is my performance life which involves hopefully large audiences and a lot of group collaboration. But that is my gig and I get to direct it, and for the most part call the shots. So I had to stretch myself a bit to participate in a series of group events with people I did not know.
The best one was going to the busy Barbadian town of Oistins on a Friday night for a fish dinner. It was loud, crowded, chaotic. Not my scene, but I ended up in a wild dance with one of the locals to ear-splitting reggae music nontheless. I don’t drink. Haven’t had a drink for 33 years. But I discovered that I can definitely still party.
But the real reason we were all gathered into this little temporary community was to celebrate love. Andy and Julia chose this beautiful reading from Corelli’s Mandolin:
“Love is a temporary madness. It erupts like an earthquake and then subsides. And when it subsides you have to make a decision. You have to work out whether your roots have become so entwined together that it is inconceivable that you should ever part. Because this is what love is. Love is not breathlessness, it is not excitement, it is not the promulgation of promises of eternal passion. That is just being “in love” which any of us can convince ourselves we are. Love itself is what is left over when being in love has burned away, and this is both an art and a fortunate accident. Your mother and I had it, we had roots that grew towards each other underground, and when all the pretty blossom had fallen from our branches we found that we were one tree and not two.”
― Louis de Bernières, Captain Corelli’s Mandolin
And oh, the happy couple!