The Diary of Anne Ku
28 August 2000 Monday
A DUTCH CIVIL WEDDING
It poured this morning at breakfast. We were worried that it would rain all day. Before leaving London, I had checked the weather forecast for Amsterdam - and the chance of a thunderstorm was high every day. However, it didn't rain on Saturday or Sunday. So does this mean that the chance is now doubled or tripled for Monday?
By the time we got dressed and gone outside to wait for our ride, the sun had overcome the clouds and the rain. We guessed that a certain gentleman must be the father of the groom. He was about to leave without us - when instinct told him to back up and ask if we were also dressed for the wedding.
About a third of the guests came from outside of the Netherlands. Accordingly, the bride and groom decided to have the wedding conducted in English. Since the guest of honour - the grandfather of the bride - did not speak English, the multi-lingual Dutch justice of peace translated some of her speech into French as well. It was a historic room - once the bedroom of King Wilhelm. We were, after all, witnessing a truly historical moment - the marriage of my friends.
The favourite question seemed to be "so how did you know the couple?" It turned out that we had neither studied, worked, nor lived together. The bride was taking care of my houseplants before she had even met me. Tonight she said to me,"Ah! But anyone who owned such lovely plants must be a good person to get to know." So the first time I met them was when I had gone to collect my plants.
Tonight they gave us a formal banquet to remember. Two pre-courses followed by a main course of succulent tender beef steak. All champagne, white and red wines, and dessert wines were the finest Italian. People always remember the food and the beauty of the bride. Indeed, tonight is a night to remember!