that included getting married. (Part I)
We had a blast in the last three weeks. We flew out to California and headed to Yosemite. We got married after a couple of days on the lawn behind the Ahwahnee hotel, in the middle of Yosemite Valley. We even surprised everyone by having my dad perform the ceremony! Here's a shot of Yosemite Falls which served as the background for our ceremony. We even had deer show up! They were grazing maybe 15 feet away from all of us as the wedding party walked in!
The wedding was great! We had a short ceremony, which was good because despite the amazing temps the 2 days before, it was actually a little cool. We found a way to include both families, which I think turned out very nicely. Cowboy designed the ceremony himself (a few days before we left), and I was very impressed. It turned out very lovely. Afterwards, we went inside the Ahwahnee and ate. They had the HUGE fireplaces lit, so people could warm up practically inside them. The room for the reception had huge floor to ceiling windows so we could still see the towering cliffs, forest and waterfalls outside. We ate, toasted, ate some more and then had dessert. The toasts were very nice. Cowboy was really happy with the people who toasted us from my side - he said Dr. 90210 got "me" across and my sister got the right emotion. They were both very sweet and I will remember them forever. Everyone sang "Sto Lat" to us - a polish tradition and we cut the cake. I think our cake topper was a big hit - we didn't really like the traditional ones so we had a figurine of Hawkgirl and Green Arrow (from Justice League) stand on top. The pastry chef made us a platform of chocolate for them so they wouldn't have to sink knee deep in our cake. We also had a dessert action station - all things flaming!
After eating so much, we hopped on a bus for a 2 hour tour of the valley. It was great - our guide was quite funny, and we saw the highlights of the valley. We even saw a climber scaling El Capitan! The guide had lots of anecdotal stories about famous climbers in the past and some tragic climbs as well. We saw Bridalviel Falls, the Cathedral Spires, Half Dome, not to mention all the seasonal waterfalls and amazing forestry along the way.
It ended way too soon. Luckily, I got to spend some time with my friends (who kick ass by making it all the way out there) before they were to leave the next day. Not enough time, but I was happy to have that small amount.
We stuck around for a couple more days before heading out to Napa. We drove through Napa for a day and flew out to Kauai the next. Stay tuned.