It was a second marriage and the fan fare with matches engraved in gold with their name, the date were missing in this Maine wedding.
So was a fancy wedding dress, tuxedos or fine china dinner ware at the reception. The Maine wedding was simple, easy, pretty much free cost wise with every friend, family member of the bride and groom pitching in many small ways. The simplicity of the Maine wedding made it memorable for me.
For starters, my role was to hit a local kid’s clothing store and I bought three pink with black polka dot dresses for the bride’s daughter, and my two daughters that were in the all in the 7 to 9 years old range. The “bridesmaids” were in charge of flowers. Not from a Maine florist, from the wild land along the way to the recitation of vows each had memorized, not read to from a fill in the blank standard format typical of many weddings. The wedding “chapel” the top of a hill in Ludlow Maine near sunset. We all gathered at the base of the 72 acre property and the walk up the hill not hard, one all ages could do slowly as we quietly made the trip together, in two by two line formation due to width of the path, old farm roadway.
At the top of the hill, turning around you could see a long Aroostook County view. No homes, sign of man in that view. Just rolling woods, distant fields. The scenery, backdrop at sunset in late summer hit me as real, natural, Maine. No side of the church to divide the guests and seat them at in this natural Maine country setting.
Gather as you arrive at the clearing on the top of this Ludlow Maine abandoned farm around the bridge and groom.
The bridesmaids gathers brown eyed susans, indian paint brushes, daisies, lupine and other wild flowers along the way up the hill. Fresh from the walk, not set free from a cooler after being “harvested” weeks before. Fresh like the new union, marriage done in a simple Maine style, format typical of life here.
After vows were exchanged with all of us on our feet, the ceremony kept short but from the hearts of both bridge and groom, the justice of the peace, a family friend declared the union was official. The husband and wife were joined, for all to see with the powers invested in him from Augusta, the state of Maine.
Young, old and in between we all slowly filed down the winding Maine field and then woods path to return to the bride’s parents home where many yard games were set up.
Home made food on long tables got my attention after the earlier walk. Kids laughing, families coming together, a Maine wedding without the fanfare, pomp and circumstance funded by Visa, Mastercard, Discovery, American Express. Simple, like the easy relationship, friendship of the bride and groom.