When Bob and I got married 26 years ago, we had a very traditional wedding. I wore a beaded white gown with a long train, Bob wore a tuxedo, we had about 175 people in attendance, sitting respectively on the side of the bride and of the groom. We had the typical flower bouquets, wedding guest book with plume pen, first dance, and more.
I look back on that time, and although I wouldn’t say I have regrets (really Bob, I’m not saying that), I can say that if I had to do it all over again, I would likely do things a little differently. I’m not a beaded white gown with a long train kind of gal. Bob is not a tuxedo kind of guy. We’re really more of the backyard barbecue party throwing kind of people. But we—really I, because Bob seriously talked about a backyard barbecue at the time—felt like I had to follow along with how things are “supposed to be” rather than how I might have preferred them to be.
Thus when Bob and I were in San Miguel de Allende recently, and we came upon a wedding procession, being led by a mariachi band and a donkey, and with everyone dressed in decidedly non-traditional wedding garb, I couldn’t help but be a little jealous. Granted the soon to be newlyweds were about the age Bob and I are now, not the 20-somethings we were then. But I was still a little jealous.
We caught the parade as they ambled through Juarez Park early in the evening, with the band leading the way. In addition to the musicians and the donkey, the procession also included two Mojigangas, the giant puppets that accompany nearly every San Miguel de Allende procession, dancing along with the party. Once the group left the park and started walking along the narrow, cobblestone streets, car traffic stopped as the revelers danced their way towards a downtown restaurant. With the beautiful streetlights of San Miguel and its stunning architecture all around, it was quite a scene. We didn’t appear to be the only hangers on to the party. And I’m only a tiny bit disappointed that the family didn’t invite us in once they arrived. We did however, get to hear one final mariachi tune as the bride and groom and their families stood at the door of the restaurant dancing and swaying to the music. When we waved goodbye to them as they went inside, I wasn’t crying, my eyes were just watering because the procession kicked up a lot of dust into the air.