Happy Monday! Chris and Chanelle are now happily married, and notwithstanding one snafu with their travel plans will be honeymooning all week. It was a wonderful weekend for everyone. I’m glad I got to be part of it, and I’ll try to summarize it pretty briefly.

I finished my work shift at the pool Friday afternoon, which was a nice little incentive to finish. Friday evening was the rehearsal dinner – but a wild one, because it was essentially a dinner cruise! Unlike the night before with the Padres game, this time we had no problem finding a taxi to take us to downtown San Diego near the docks. However, when we got there everything was held up by a mysterious delay, so there was plenty of time for people to wander around along the marina and check out the old-timey ships that were tied up along the water there. Finally, just as Elizabeth was about to faint from hunger, the captain of the ship came out and greeted us at the dock. In a truly classy touch, waiters were passing out sangria as we got on board. Unfortunately for me, before we’d even departed, I managed to upend our table and spill sangria all over my pants and shoes. It was an inauspicious start to the evening that I did my best to forget about.

There was an open bar, so I had a margarita, then shared a tequila shot (more like a small glass) with Lyndsey and Alex’s friend Jimmy, then a third glass of sangria. The ship cruised along at an enjoyable clip in the San Diego evening. Just as I started to feel chilly, the captain called everyone downstairs to dinner.

Dinner began with a caesar salad that kept Elizabeth from collapsing with hunger. Then each of Chris’s parents and all of his siblings except for David gave speeches. The speeches varied in length (Victor’s: long, Alex’s: short), and they varied in tone (Michael’s: humorous, Charlie’s: televangelist), but all of them were a touching reminder of the closeness of Elizabeth’s extended family. The sun set out over San Diego Bay as speeches continued.

Dinner was the much-awaited steak fajitas, which were excellent. I somehow got roped into another tequila shot somewhat against my will (in this instance, with Chris. I couldn’t say no to doing a shot with the groom), and then as the ship headed back to dock, we packed the small dance floor for a short time before the ship’s crew got annoyed at how long we were there. After holding out as long as we could, most of the revelers turned their attention to downtown San Diego, while Elizabeth and I helped with cleanup. We decided to head back to the hotel and await the (non-existent, as it turned out) afterparty. I was rather pleased to find myself in bed before 1:00 a.m.

I awoke early on the wedding day and decided to go for a run before everyone was awake. This indeed proved that I was made of stern stuff, especially when the sun started to shine through the ever-present smoke layer and my head started to hurt just a little bit. But I made it through, and even saw quite a few jackrabbits on the beach which was interesting. I got back just in time to shower and go to the bakery with Elizabeth. She was due in the bridal “get-ready” room at 9:00, and was bringing coffee and breakfast up. I was drafted to bring an avocado toast to the door and knock so Chanelle could have it, so I waited for two to-go orders from the restaurant. I got them, delivered one, and walked all the way to the other side of the resort, sat down, opened my container… and Elizabeth called and asked for an avocado toast for Pam. Abandoning at the get-ready room, I went back down to make a second attempt at ordering breakfast.

This time, I met up with Garrett and Winston at the restaurant, and abandoned my avocado toast order in favor of a breakfast sandwich. Jimmy met us too while we were discussing plans to paddleboard. I had no idea how we’d pull that off on the day of a wedding but was willing to try. In fact, Terri immediately texted and asked for help moving some boxes to the venue, so we had to do that. But afterwards, despite my skepticism, I was renting paddleboards (and a kayak for me instead) through the resort with Terri, Lyndsey, Garrett, Winston, and Jimmy. The kayaking was actually pretty smooth – we stayed in the Coronado marina area, which was sheltered. The wind definitely made going west harder than it would have been otherwise, but I was surprised at how shallow and fast my kayak was. Paddleboarding looks fun, but I’m too scared. Please respect my decision.

Now it was time to hurry up and get changed for the wedding. I hustled a shower and got 80% of my tuxedo on without needing any help, but struggled with the last few things (bowtie, cuff links) and had to have Winston help. Then Elizabeth, who had been in the get-ready room for like 5 hours, came hustling in rushed to change into a dress. After some zipper malfunctions, she was finally ready to. While we waited for Pam, Nolan Doordash Service grabbed 4 salads from the bakery for everyone as ballast. We scarfed them down, and all of a sudden we were in a stretch limo on the way to the venue (less than a mile away).

The Coronado Yacht Club looks like it sounds – a great venue for a wedding. I don’t have any pictures on my phone at the moment, but I’ll upload a few if I get the chance. Chris and Chanelle got married in a short, beautiful ceremony right on the water that was punctuated by Chanelle’s emphatic “I DO!” I’m so happy for the two of them, who obviously love each other very much. It had been a long time coming, and I’m so glad they didn’t have to wait any longer.

The reception was held indoors, and in typical Fairchild fashion they got stuff like first dances and speeches out of the way quickly. Robert and Chanelle danced to a song that I don’t know the name of that referenced going to Boston, since Chanelle got into MIT for an MBA to follow Chris there. Then Debbie and Chris danced to “I Hope You Dance”. And then, as a giant surprise, Chris sang the song that he once sang to Chanelle when he first asked her out ten years ago. I will admit to shedding a few tears in what was easily the most beautiful moment of the weekend.

There was food (steak again), and there were drinks. And there was music, and there was dancing. It went about how I’d imagine – nobody was on the dance floor except for Fairchilds, who took pride in never leaving it, and never not being the rowdiest people at the wedding. The band was phenomenal and kept the atmosphere going all night. About the only real trouble I ran into was an angry bartender who slammed my drink down in front of me, but I think that was more of a him problem than a me problem. The Money Dance, where you pay for the couple’s honeymoon, was nice, even though Elizabeth’s cousins robbed me blind for it. Then there was the Chair Dance, where I may have almost contributed to dropping one of the couple. Then there was just a lot of plain old music and plain old hooting and hollering and having a good time. When the night finished, my shirt and vest were plastered with sweat.

We got a ride back to the hotel from a friendly security guard and I was able to change out of my soaked clothes. Unfortunately, there was no rest for the weary (literally), as I was routed out of bed multiple times to make it to the after-party in the getting ready room. I can’t tell you much of what happened – I definitely hung out with Hunter and Winston some, and Elizabeth some, and Michael wanted to do more shots but I ran away – but to be honest, I was dead tired the whole time. When Elizabeth turned to me at 1:30 and asked if I was ready to leave, I replied in the affirmative. Apparently we got out at just the right time, since we saw security guards on their way up to break apart a party that would continue intermittently until after 4:00. Not that I would know, since I was dead asleep.

I’ll cover the pool party yesterday in tomorrow’s entry, just wanted to write about the wedding in a little bit of detail today! So far, today has been nothing but work so that should catch me back up.

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