A couple of months ago, soon after I had returned from a wedding in London, I receive an e-vite from a former colleague of mine from Abu Dhabi. He is getting married. In Ireland. I started laughing. This is clearly the time to get married and my friends aren’t making it easy for me either as it is the fourth wedding on foreign soil in roughly a year.
The first was a Kurdish wedding in Istanbul; then a Syrian wedding in Abu Dhabi; then a Bengali wedding in London. Now a Brazilian/Irish wedding in Ireland. At least there is someone Irish involved in the wedding!
The groom was a colleague from Abu Dhabi and I also happened to live in a staff-house with him for a couple of months last year. Being woken by giant Brazilian singing and dancing to samba music at nine in the morning on weekends wasn’t always fun, but to be honest I could never really get upset as the guy is a good laugh!
Unfortunately due to work I was not able to go to Ireland for longer than the weekend, I only took a day off. I left Thursday after (with another colleague from the office who also knows the groom) and headed to London where I would catch a flight to Dublin from I where catch a flight to Kerry from where I would get a taxi to Killarney. It doesn’t sound simple, I know and just to make things a little more fun, the French (Ugh! I know! They are awful!) decided to close their airspace on Thursday which added almost an hour to my already delayed flight from Tripoli. My two and a half hour connection was cut down to an hour. Where is the problem? Well I had left my suit in London the last I was there, so I had my aunt take my suit to the airport, but that meant my already short connection would be eaten up by going to the arrivals lounge; pick up the suit; catch the train to the other terminal; clear security and customs; and get to my departure gate. I got there minutes before the gates closed.
There is something odd about flying somewhere… How come they always make you walk the first five kilometers of the journey?!?! I really don’t get it, I always get to the gate wondered if I missed some fine print in the ticket that that says I need to do the initial part of the journey by foot.
After leaving Tripoli at 3:20pm, we (me and another two colleagues, one of which joined us in Dublin after taking another route) arrived in Killarney at roughly midnight. To say we were tired is putting it mildly; we arrived at the hotel and collapsed on our respective beds.
Next morning we got up and had breakfast and then headed into town to find a drycleaner to press our suits (mine in particular was in bad shape). With the help of the very friendly taxi-driver, we found a dry cleaner that would be able to press our suits before the wedding. While our suits were being pressed, we walked around the town. I was starting to regret not coming for longer as the town and the surrounds were absolutely stunning.
After the walk we got our suits and headed back to the hotel to get changed into our ‘costumes’ as one of my friends and colleagues put it. All of these weddings I’ve mentioned have been a little reunion as well and this one is no different. Ten of my former colleagues of the Abu Dhabi office flew to Ireland for the wedding while, me and two other colleagues flew in from Libya. We took the rather long drive to the bride’s village where the wedding service would be held in her local church.
After the wedding service, most people headed towards the hotel where the reception was being held, but Marcelo and I, since we didn’t have a car, got a lift with one of the bridesmaids but had to tag along for all the post wedding service photos. The good thing about this was that we got to see some more of the Irish country side and really had me regretting not coming for longer. The photos really do not give the beauty of the area justice.
Eventually we were back at the hotel for the wedding reception. Now, being in Libya has meant that my already weak tolerance for alcohol has been weakened further and the result is that very little amounts of alcohol can have a devastating effect on me. Now add to that the fact that I was at a BRAZILIAN and IRISH wedding… declining a drink in this environment can be deadly, thus a mixture of wanting to enjoy myself, keeping up with the others and a fear of being bludgeoned to death with a pint of Guinness I drank a lot more than I was suppose to.
Fortunately I didn’t embarrass myself or others, I was only more ‘jovial’ than usual (oh and for some reason felt it appropriate to mimic the Irish accent). But the remainder of the evening was a lot fun. Being around familiar faces from Abu Dhabi; dancing; chatting; being made fun of (only in the way my AD colleagues know how!) was brilliant.
Problem the high level of the special substance in my blood meant that the end of the evening is a bit of blur. I know (from photographic evidence) that I fell asleep at the table; I know the was cake in my clothes; I don’t how I got back to the hotel room and come to think about it, I don’t know how my friends got into the hotel room as I had the key and was the first one in and don’t remember getting up to open the door…
The morning after… “Arrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrgggggggggggggg”. The little people in my brain were banging everything they had at their disposal going “I told you, you shouldn’t drink!”. The biggest hangover I’ve had in a long while… All the lights were too bright leading to permanent fixation of my sunglasses to my head… Everyone was talking too loud, even though most people were whispering…
With a bad hangover, I flew back to London, where I spent the afternoon nursing the hangover with shisha and some friends at home (I was too exhausted to leave anyway).
And that my friends, is how you spend a wedding weekend in Ireland.