The reason we went to Harmelen last weekend was of course the wedding of Berry and Manon. Besides that, we took the opportunity to rest a little bit after the last busy weeks.
As a result, we have spent most of our time (except for Friday) on the terras in the garden of the house of my parents.
But Friday was different, since that was the big day; the day we came for.
After getting up late, taking a North-European breakfast, and waking up under the shower we realised that most of the morning already has passed, so we started to run to get ready in time.
Thursday we had a lot of time to wrap our presents in paper and prepare our contribution to the book with personal notes from the guests, but as usual I waited with these things until the very last moment.
With a little bit of running we arrived exactly on time at the house of Manon’s parents.
Together with the family of Berry and Manon and some of their best friends we drunk a cup of coffee with some cake. We talked a little bit with Ton and Mirjam, who had brought their two children, of which I haven’t seen the youngest (Daphne) yet. As you can imagine there were lots of things to talk about. After a while Berry and Manon arrived from their photo tour, and they looked gorgeous! Of course they were really happy to see us, and we had a small opportunity to talk a little bit.
Because the weather was great, we were able to walk to the centre of Harmelen, were the old ‘monastery farm’ (now a restaurant) provided a beautiful ambiance for the official ceremony.
There were barely enough chairs to fit all the people present, and the ceremony was not too oficial with regular jokes about Berry’s talent for playing darts, friends through thick and thin, and of course the hassle with the ‘stoofje’ under Manon’s feet.
Since we were in such a romantic place, Berry and Manon had chosen to use some time for some pictures together with the family, witnesses and friends in different combinations.
After sending Loek to the supermarket to get us some water, we walked to the church.
The mass was also really nice, although a little bit long. I participated as a witness, but was surprised to see that my role was only that: witness the rituals. I did not have to sign any document! Maybe if I would have been on the oposite site, I could have had an additional function by trying to catch Berry when he accidentally almost fell from the altar.
Anyway, after hearing them say “yes” and seeing them exchange rings for the second time, we were absolutely sure that they were married, so it was time to party.
Besides that we were very thirsty, and as a result we arrived first in ‘De Putcop’, where the reception would take place. Since it was already late, we quickly sung the welcome song prepared by the family, cut the pie, congratulated the couple and sat down to (finally) have a drink.
While we were relaxing and talking at our table, more and more people entered. Both Berry and Manon are very active Harmelen, Berry in Jong Nederland, SCH, the Pirates, de Kwakbollen, and Manon in EHBO.
After filling our stomachs we were ready again for the final party, with even more people than appeared on the reception. I tried to speak at least some minutes with all my old friends, but one evening is by far too short for this. At least I (and Maria José as well) had a lot of fun.
Sunday before leaving home again we visited Berry and Manon at home. We watched (parts of) the video made and talked a lot about the day…
Wednesday they will leave to Florida, where they will visit Disney World (they are huge fans of Disney) and have a cruise through the Caribbean.
I wish them a good time, and hope to see them soon again.
[Update 2004.01.21]: Changed link to JNH