I don’t know how to mold clay to a thinness less than brittle, but still fine enough to appear delicate. Or sculpt the wafer of clay into a petal, and repeat the process a multitude of times as building blocks of a small flower. In the center of the flower, a pearl of clay. For this project, several flowers of varying sizes were necessary, ranging from ¾ of an inch to 1 ½ inch in diameter, with individual petals proportionally smaller, and they appeared to be in the family of mums or daisies (I also don’t claim to be a flower expert). Each piece was meticulously hand-painted, and after they dried, artfully grouped together and somehow fastened into a crown.
I could be wrong about the order of painting versus composure into a flower and a group of flowers; I am very likely missing essential steps of construction. My skill and knowledge in this department comes from a tisket, a tasket, a flower making basket. Fortunately, my errors are irrelevant. The artisan knew what to do, and executed the project. This special wreath, painstakingly and lovingly made over several tens of hours, had a significant destiny: to form a halo over the face of a bride.
My friend Erin made this crown of gold for our friend’s wedding, and I was touched both by the workmanship of the piece, and the obvious love that went into making each component. It complemented the Mexican wedding perfectly, but the bride’s beauty and joy eclipsed that of the decoration in a way that did not diminish it. Indefatigable Erin also made her own headpiece as maid of honor (I hate saying matron of honor – we are too young to be matronly! Even if it is technically appropriate) and a headpiece for the bridesmaid. Each were unique and hand-made from tiny beads and wires. Before I stop this love poem to a friend, I have to note that she ALSO made hand-made silk flowers to adorn the hair of all ladies attending the wedding, and made some to be used as decorations.
Why does this matter? Oh goodness, it matters because of an overwhelming generosity of the heart, which we can perceive in others, and which touches and pervades our own hearts. The true gift is not the physical article (although they were freaking amazing), but the googly melty way that it makes the receiver feel loved, thought of, and appreciated. In many ways, those totally freaking fake flowers were immeasurably better than real flowers.
Erin was not the only generous soul at this wedding; everyone (emphatically, everyone) there had incredible giving spirits. This inclination was enhanced by the nuptial atmosphere, rather than brought on by it.
For example, and on a lighter note, the bride made welcome bags for everyone which were nautical-themed due to our proximity to the beach. They featured the phrase “Feelin’ Naughti,” depicted an anchor, and contained items such as a light-up sippy cup (with a message of “Let’s Fiesta like there’s no Mañana”), hand sanitizer and aloe, headache and tummy medicine, and a bottle of water. Well, everyone received a bottle of water except for me. I was given a purple Gatorade. The bride knew of my obsession with purple G2 (I only talk about it every time I’m dehydrated or think about being dehydrated, and sometimes take pictures with it), and switched it out in my Naughti bag. She even apologized for it being Gatorade instead of G2! I thought it was beyond awesome, and extremely thoughtful considering that she had so much going on. What with getting married, and all.
There are so many other ways in which people at the wedding shared their generous hearts, but these are just two examples of acts that got me in the feels, or made me know that someone was actively considerate.
The wedding was at a resort in Huatulco, Mexico in Oaxaca, and I arrived on Wednesday, the rehearsal dinner was on Thursday, wedding on Friday, recovery day on Saturday, and check out/flights on Sunday. Early morning coffee sparked excellent conversation with far away friends. Late night drinking and frivolity generated stories for the next day, and ongoing jokes. Food was relished, and devoured. Don’t get me started on the Oaxacan cheese …. great cheese.
One day we took a taxi into town to shop and eat lunch, and I wish I had more time to explore outside of the resort. That being said, slathering up with some 50 SPF and hanging out by or in the infinity pool overlooking the bay was ideal. It was a sunny 90 degrees, and my favorite floatie looked like a slice of watermelon. We also went down to the beach once, but it was a bit of a harrowing experience for me. I am not good with heights, and I wore boat shoes instead of sneakers to navigate the steep path down to the crystal waters of the bay by the resort. I called it the Cliffs of Insanity, but most of my friends said it wasn’t that bad.
Unfortunately, there were more flight issues on the way home. Suffice it to say, I had to push 3 for “general information, suggestions or doubts” several times. Yes, that is a quote from the call-in menu. Yes, I memorized it due to repetition … and I had many doubts.
My only regrets: fear of heights made it so that I only enjoyed the beach once, and I ruined the silk flower Erin made because I jumped in the pool with it on.
Cheesy and sentimental message of the day: you don’t have to wear a wreath over your head to feel like you have been given a crown of gold. Sometimes, it just takes a purple Gatorade.
— Your huckleberry
PS – if you’d like to support a small business, Erin has an Etsy account: TheBotanistAndCo.