We made our way over the last hill, the line of cars on the side of the road indicated that our three and a half hour drive had finally come to an end, and we had at long last reached our final destination. A light blue farm tractor was pulling a covered wooden cart full of others that had traveled from near and far to come and celebrate this truly joyous occasion. We watched as it slowly ferried it's way up to the top of a small clearing on a rolling hill tucked back among woods and corn fields. We thought about walking ourselves up but reconsidered as a light but steady sprinkle started. Shortly the ferry had returned to pick up another load of passengers.
As we approached the spot in the middle of a clover field we could see a small pergola covered in flowers with a couple of sections of split rail fence on either side that looked like they had been constructed just for the occasion, both the pergola and the fence were left untouched by stain or paint and accented its surroundings nicely with their natural color. The place overlooked a shallow valley and more wooded rolling hills and with the wisps of fog settling in it gave you a breath of the old country. Folding chairs mingled with bales of hay greeted the guests as we made our way to our seats. Reading the beautifully hand drawn programs it was plain to see that this was going to be a simple yet eloquent country wedding. Verbose or hackneyed vocal performances by cousins or college roommates were replaced by the rhythmic melodies of faint Irish guitar and fiddle playing quietly in the wind.
As the announcement was made that the "Girls Are Coming!" something that can only be called a true blessing, and what most of us were praying for, happened, the rain stopped. It was at this point that the groom himself walked his own mother, followed by his soon to be mother-in-law, down the aisle to be seated in the front row. The bride and her maids made their way in their white chariot pulled by their own tractor up the hill to the back of the congregation. As they stepped from their ride each one slowly walked down the aisle and took their place. Then the time had come! As the congregation took to its feet the beautiful country girl in her pure white dress made her way to the moment she had planned for her whole life and to the man she was about to promise the rest of it to. As she walked, slowly but surely, in her father's arm, you could see the wellspring of joy bubbling over on the groom's face. Soon they would make the simple yet profound promises that we all who are married make, to love and cherish in any and all circumstances. After a brief yet concise Gospel message was presented the two exchanged vows and rings, kissed and began what will certainly prove to be the best time of their lives.