We attended a wedding in Toronto on Saturday. The groom Jon was a former student of Dave’s and was also a member of the highschool basketball team Dave coached in Hong Kong. Jon was one of the student participants in a school trip to Israel I chaperoned.
During previous visits to Toronto, we have caught up with Jon over lunch or at a Jays game.
Jon is off to Berkley University in California this fall to get a Ph.D. in ethnomusicology.
We had met Jon’s bride Marijke the last time we saw Jon in Toronto.
We were delighted to be invited to Jon and Marijke’s wedding in the historic Timothy Eaton Memorial Church. The church was built over a hundred years ago. The wedding was lovely and after the service, we were invited to enjoy some ice cream from one of the ice cream trucks parked outside. Then we took a cab over to a unique gallery-style event site for the reception.
During the cocktail hour, while we were enjoying some amazing appetizers, the fire alarm went off. Dave and I were chatting with an interesting couple our age who were former Hong Kong residents and now worked as bankers in Toronto. Like the other guests, at first we just ignored the alarm, but then members of the wedding party urged us to head outside. As we sat on the curbs and hung around in the parking lot three fire trucks pulled up sirens blaring. The firefighters headed into the building and after a few minutes came back out telling us it was safe to return to the reception. Apparently, someone had been smoking on the premises and that had set off the alarms. Dave was pleased Jon the groom came over for a chat. He thanked us for coming to the wedding.
We didn’t know anyone at the wedding except for the bride and groom but had interesting conversations with our tablemates at the reception. Dave sat beside a professor who is writing a book about the American novelist Flannery O’Connor and I sat beside a British Columbia lawyer whose son just happens to be married to the daughter of a British Columbia lawyer who was a college classmate of ours.
We had never been at a wedding with fire trucks before although the experience did remind us of our niece Hannah’s September long weekend wedding many years ago when emergency responders showed up after a tornado hit the tent where the reception was being held. Those kinds of surprises may not be what married couples plan for at their weddings but they certainly do make them memorable.