I suspect this weekend will be the last long weekend of debauchery and social exhaustion for quite some time.
Man. Weddings. In the South. With many guests being long-time friends coming together after long absences from one another in the scattered locales of their new adult lives. You can't imagine the amount of back-in-the-day stories told and bourbon consumed (thankfully, no bourbon for me, but I did more than my part on the wine, food, and vodka tonics.)
One fine gentleman, we'll call him Derrek, was in particularly impressive form by the end of the wedding. He started talking about how women used to find him attractive (and my heart went out to his drunken soul-bearing, it's rough to be at the wedding of one of your close childhood friends. Who hasn't drowned the emotions it brings?) Finally, some of his well-meaning, but also quite lit, friends tried to suggest that he should stop imbibing. He responded, while dancing to music that only he could hear in a bar full of people dressed in black-tie having non-musical conversations, "Oh, no. [dance move, spin around] Derrek has been much more drunk than this. [Shake the booty towards the well-meaning friends and look over the shoulder, smiling...] Derrek's fine."
Gotta love people who talk about themselves in the 3rd person when drunk. Comedy. I'm not doing it justice. Trust me, it was funny. I also can't imagine how horrid Derrek must have felt this morning. I was nowhere near his level of intoxication, but after the bit that I had and the 5 AM bedtime plus cross-country flight, I'm slow, fuzzy, and just couldn't get anywhere near the studying I thought I'd try to fit in done. Thankfully, I managed to squeeze in just enough studying during the rehearsal and various other activities that I don't feel guilty.
I also had the pleasure of finding myself the only female guest with uncovered shoulders at an outdoor wedding in the humid 85 degree sultry weather of the South. Oh, wait, not the only woman. In fairness, there were two teenagers or young twenties from Great Britain whose shoulders were uncovered as well. Initially, I felt I couldn't look to them for back-up, because, hey, they are foreigners and didn't know the rules. But then, I decided, hell, I'm a foreigner too. California is NOT the south, and I'm the Californian wife of that Southern Boy up there in the tux. I'm gonna be the woman who shows up at hot afternoon Southern outdoor weddings with my shoulders uncovered. I don't wear stockings (the two women on either side of me both had *stockings* on!). I meant well and I didn't mean to offend. And I was probably more comfortable (although, even with my low covereage option, I did have disgusting sweat stains on my silk dress when I stood up. Thankfully, they dried quickly. Nothing elegant about it, though.) Regardless of my foreign excuse, I still felt slightly apprehensive about my faux pas.
Of course, one of the best things about the South is that everyone is much to polite to actually say anything. So I have no idea if I offended anyone or if it was all in my head. Needless to say, if that's my biggest concern, my brain wasn't too focused on bar studies this weekend. And that's just fine.
Overall, it was a perfect last hurrah. A gorgeous wedding, time spent with friends from afar, time with the in-laws, and planning visits in the future when I can travel again. But boy am I glad to be home and able to sleep in my own bed.