Sunday, April 10, 2005

Brett & Elise’s Wedding

The second of the weddings we came for has come and gone yesterday, and today i'm sporting a wicked hangover from what ended up being a very late night as we kicked on after the reception.

Todd and I had a bucks night of sorts for Brett last Saturday night, one week before the wedding so that we couldn't put him any predicament that might result in him missing the wedding or being forced to turn up with one eyebrow shaved off. With him coming up from Melbourne in the early evening, we arranged for all of our mates (except Dan and Gav who were away) to meet at the Dioth family home at Bracken Ridge, for an old-fashioned BBQ out the back, and a catch up as many of us hadn't seen into the city to visit many of brett's old haunts, such as the Victory pub where we both shared an impromptue 'Livin' on a Prayer' karaoke moment on stage.

Later we ventured into the Valley and enjoyed some adult entertainment at a not-so-classy establishment.. but that's where it all went pear-shaped - Brett, who still had his mobile phone switched on, took a call from Elise and her hen's party who were on their massive night out in the City, and to cut a long story short it all ended in tears! The rest of us stayed on with me and Buse, as we spent every '$5 note' we had on us before having to make our way home as the sun came up.

Overall the whole night was pretty low key, and was more about all being together and having a cigar and some drinks and a chat about old times which we certainly did - I think Todd said to me about 20 times: "Can you beleive we are on Brett Dioth's Bucks Night?" - and no, I don't think we could beleive it at the time!..

As for the wedding - well, what a show this would be!! There were high expectations for this one as we had been hearing all about the organising dilemma's since their engagement at the Bowery in the Valley back in late 2003. Poor Elise had been through all of the typical trials and tribulations with family etc. in planning it all, and then throw into the mix that they had relocated to Melbourne for Brett's new job halfway through the organising - but she pulled it all of with little help from others.. top effort young lady!

Brett, Todd, myself, Brett's dad, and the father of the Bride met very early on the morning of the wedding, for a very close old-fashioned razor shave at a barbers in the city. Something that Brett was very determined to do with all of us, it was a great way to share with him the morning of his wedding.

Brett and I having a close shave on the morning of the wedding

After that we collected the flowers from the Rocklea Markets, and then headed home to get ready at the Dioth's. We donned our suits, cravats, and vests, and got into David's Prado 4x4 for the trip to the service at Nundah. Just before this I was entrusted with the wedding rings, which I continued to keep tabs on right up until I handed them over at the alter!

On the way in the car, you could say that the seriousness of the situation hit a very nervous Brett seemingly all at once. He came out with the statement as we approached the church on Sandgate Road: "I'm about to do something really grown-up aren't I?" he said to us - we all nearly died!! A bit late to be realising this with only 2 corners to go before the church mate!!

My favourite photo - a shot I took as Brett's mum Chris puts his button-hole flower on before the service

We got him there before he changed his mind, and got a few photos together as the guests arrived. Just before Todd and I escorted him into the church, I turned to my mate and said: 'Let's go in and get you married to your girl eh?' - it didn't exactly settle the situation! We both stood there with a bit of a tear in the eye, and then we headed inside to stand up the front with the priest and wait her arrival.

Waiting for the bride to arrive

The ceremony was nice enough (having been at the rehersal the night before kind of ruins the surprise!), and the bridesmaids looked great. Elise had certainly gone all out with her strapless dress etc. and they went through their vowes without a hitch. After it was a done deal I got to witness the signatures on the certificate, and then we headed down the aisle and out of the church to the congratulations of all and then off to the University of Queensland in the limo for the photo session.

Photos of the service, signing of the marriage certficate, and me and my lovely bridesmaid Sam

After that we returned to the reception venue at the Royal on the Park in the city, where the party had already started. All of our friends had started drinking at Dale's place straight after the church, and were in fine form by the time they made it to the hotel. In the taxi on the way they decided it'd be funny to go through my bag of clothes and shoes - that I had arranged them to bring so I could get changed post-reception - and then wear my shoes into the reception to see if i'd notice. The photos below say it all.. Bastards!!

Gavin with my shoes in the taxi - bastard!

With the guests seated we made our official announced entrance into the Reception, and the night began. I had held off from having too much to drink, as I still had my well-prepared speech to deliver! Waiting to make the speech seemed to drag on forever, and it wasn't until after the main course of dinner that I got to take the podium. I spoke about me and Brett as friends since I'd met him back in 1988, all the way through to meeting Elise and our friendship with them both, now becoming husband and wife.

Despite being as nervous as hell I must have done OK, as no-one managed to get a photo of me because they were either listening intently or drying their eyes. Brett and Elise hugged and thanked me at the end, and I have kept a copy of the speech and plan to show my mate from time to time, as there were a few special comments included.

Various shots from the reception

Brett and Elise cutting the cake

A few times in the night the lads adjourned to the outside pool area to indulge in a celebratory cigar supplied by Mr Dioth. There are some classic photos of that gathering which I love to look at, remember, and laugh!! It was something that we'd talked about doing, and will probably become one of those traditions we'll all uphold at our weddings.

A relaxing post-speech beer & cigar!

Ang & Laura; and Ang & Carly

As weddings do, it kicked on until last drinks were called and people began to disperse. We all said farewell and good luck o the bride and groom as they left the reception to headed to their hotel room upstairs, and I promptly got changed out of my English morning suit and into some party clothes so we could head into the Valley to carry on.

Ready to leave the reception and kick-on elsewhere; and out in the Valley where we met Renee W (visiting from London for another wedding) and out on her friend Karla's hen's night

We ended up back out at Dale and Laura's place at Northgate, and played pool out on the deck (looking over to my own house over the back fence!!) and drank until the very wee hours of today. My last memory was waking up under the pool table with Dale laughing at me, because HE had 'drunk me under the table'!!! Bastard!

On Monday night we head back to London via Singapore/Kuala Lumpar (yes, again seperate flights!!), and back to reality after what has been a pretty crazy 3 or so weeks catching up with everyone. But we have our Spain trip to look forward to first - something I haven't stopped reminding Dioth about as he embarks on married life!

So it'll be time to say farewell to Brisbane again, and let's let the UK adventure continue!!! I can't wait to return to all that is London!



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