Three friends got married on Saturday. Obviously I cannot be in three places at once and did not even really want to try. So I took the ferry over to Vancouver to stay at Dad’s place and go out to Langley for my friend, Nicole’s wedding.
I remember seeing Nicole (left, in China) a few times in my first year at the University of Victoria (six years ago). She would come to the occasional IVCF large group meeting on Friday night, with her assistance dog, Vespa. They kind of stood out so it was hard not to notice her. I didn’t really get to know her at all until my second and last year at UVic.
A few weeks before the fall semester began, a whole group of us from UVic, plus others from universities all over the province, drove to Kelowna for SLC – Student Leadership Camp. There, we spent a good few days in Bible Study and games, preparing for the year ahead. We were the leadership team of the InterVarsity chapters at our respective schools. While there, the provincial directors of IVCF presented to us the idea of going to China the following summer as a part of a Global Partnership. Right then and there, I knew I would be going; there was never any question in my mind. I wasn’t really the “world traveller” at that point that I am now. Up until then, I had been to the Netherlands with my family and lived in Australia. That was the sum total of my off-continent travel. So it was not really about the travelling… I just knew that I was supposed to go on that trip. So I signed up, and then started encouraging others to go.
Nicole and I began to get to know each other as the semester progressed. I don’t even really remember how it began, I just remember her asking me about “this trip to China.” She thought it might be fun, I told her she should go. She talked to the director, and next thing we knew, she was coming!
We spent six weeks in pretty close contact while we were in China. She and I were hotel-room buddies whenever we stayed in hotels (about two weeks of that six), and did some other stuff together.
After China and my subsequent trip around Europe, I needed a place to live in Victoria while I was preparing to go Offshore. Nicole had a room in her condo, a beautiful place about ten minutes walking from the shipyard. It was perfect, in more ways than one.
Nicole’s was a wedding I was looking forward to. I like to think I had a hand in it all: she met her now-husband in China.
So back to this past weekend, I made a long weekend of it and spent two days in Vancouver before the wedding, visiting some friends I hadn’t seen in too long. The wedding was utterly wonderful as well. The ceremony was outside in a gazebo and then we had dinner in a lovely glass conservatory. Apparently I took absolutely no pictures of the entire thing, except for the candle on the table… I’m hoping friends send some my way soon!
Perhaps the best part of the wedding, other than witnessing my friend marry the love of her life obviously, was the table I sat with at the reception. At the table were some of my nearest and dearest friends from university. At least one of them I had not seen since we graduated. But being there reminded me of how much I love and care for them and cherish the time we had together. These were people I struggled and questioned faith with (and still do, apparently, when we get back together), people I laughed with and cried with, goofed off with and studied with, and people I spent more time than I care to remember with. A great group of people and it did me good to see them and spend time with them. We closed down the dance floor.