wedding bliss and death by the road

To give a thorough weekend roundup would be tough.

Tina and I hosted my cousin from Charleston on Friday night. We all drove to Peoria, IL together on Saturday to attend and videotape another cousin’s wedding.

We don’t necessarily like to agree to do these things, but we thought we could pull it off. Our trade is our services for a piece of furniture from my cousin, who is building some of the coolest furniture I’ve seen lately.

Peoria is not the small-town I thought it might be. It was actually somewhat large. A little booming downtown with a convention center and 4 a.m. bars.

The wedding was 20 minutes outside of town in a private area of protected farmland. The ceremony was in a barn and the reception was in a tent nearby.

The reception dinner featured an all vegetarian buffet, and each fork, knife and spoon was wound in fabric with a little tag that read that a donation to marriage equality and fair treatment of animals was made on our behalf.

How freaking cool is that?

Especially when there were a wide variety of perspectives on site at the wedding.

The decor was all designed by the bride and groom, mainly the bride. And their gifts ranged from paintings of themselves dressed neo-Conan the Barbarian and blonde bombshell in arms to a family tree with all the guests at the wedding included in caricature.

On our three-hour ride back the next morning, we got caught in awful traffic. Impatience overcame Tina. She started looking at her phone to see if she could figure out what was holding us up.

She found an article that there was an auto accident on the highway we were on that took the lives of a mother pregnant with twins and some other people.

When we finally reached the site of the accident, which was on the opposite side of the highway, I could see from a quick glance that there were three bodies covered in white blankets near the worst wreckage I’ve ever seen.

And this was just glances.

I was physically shaken. My hands were uncontrollable.

I hate the idea of so many people’s idea of a Sunday becoming completely turned over by an auto accident. We take for granted that we drive three-ton homicidal machines whilst checking our texts and emails.

I have no idea what happened, but drivers are too distracted these days and we need to pay more attention.

Meanwhile, squeeze your loved ones a little tighter today and remind yourself to breathe and live.



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