A bit of back story first. My parents were married in 1971, and I was born 13 months later. My parents were divorced when I was 20 and both of them went on to remarry. My father passed away 9 years ago, and this past week would have been my parents 37th wedding anniversary, and since the family was all together for my youngest child’s birthday celebration, the topic of weddings in general, and my upcoming wedding in particular came up. This, combined with the anniversary that had just passed the day before, prompted Mom to tell me this story.It seems that my parents had a lovely, low-key wedding ceremony in a Methodist Church, as they are both Catholic, but since my Dad was divorced previously, they could not marry in the Catholic Church. Instead of a reception, they had a dinner in a nice restaurant with the bridal party and all of the immediate family (parents and siblings of the bride and groom, etc.). Here is where it gets interesting. Since my parents couldn’t afford a traditional honeymoon, they decided to go to The Poconos for a couple of days and from there they would travel to Upstate NY to spend the remainder of their honeymoon at my paternal grandparents’ summer house. However, unbeknownst to my parents, my paternal grandparents invited my maternal grandparents to the summer house for the same weekend, so they could, “show them the house, since their moving to Florida soon, and this will be their only chance to see it”.So my parents spend a couple of days at the honeymoon lodge in the Poconos, then drive to Upstate NY to spend the remainder of their honeymoon at the summer house. They arrive to find all FOUR of my grandparents!! Already ensconced in the ONLY 2 bedrooms!! Leaving my parents, the newlyweds, to sleep on a pullout sofa bed in THE LIVING ROOM!! Well, my parents are understandably upset that they have to sleep IN THE LIVING ROOM, in full view of their PARENTS. So my dad says, come on, we’ll go stay in a hotel. Well, the town where they are staying is a real one-horse, blink-and-you’ll-miss-it, small town. The only hotel is upstairs above the town watering hole (think bar with loud music and louder drunks), a general store, a post-office and I believe one gas station. Whatever, it’s late, their tired, and they’re newlyweds, so they check in. A quick note: it is late September in Upstate NY and it is extremely cold at night. The noise from the bar downstairs is terribly loud and the hotel is old and drafty and my parents try to go to bed fully dressed, but are so cold, they make the decision to go back to my grandparents’ house for the night then return home to NY City the next day.They never did have a proper honeymoon. Unless you count the cruise the whole family (my parents, myself, and my younger brother, as well as my uncle, his wife, and their 2 kids) went on when I was 17. And sadly, as I said, they divorced when I was 20, and dad passed away a few years later. But I made mom swear that she would never do anything like that to me when my Dear Fiance and I get married next year!! 09-22-08
Goodness gracious! Senility has seized both sets of grandparents! They could not remember what a honeymoon is supposed to be!