Laura P. Eshelman
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A Spanish Wedding

It may not be a royal wedding, but it’s still pretty special.

Since arriving in Spain, I have heard about the extravagance of Spanish weddings. Many guests, much food and drink and a fiesta. Mucho de todo. Needless to say, when I was lucky enough to have the opportunity to attend one, I jumped at the chance.

My landlady (who in all senses is my Spanish mother here) invited me to the wedding of her nephew. When I heard about it, I knew I needed to go. Spanish wedding hype did not disappoint.

Hair decorations are popular to wear to weddings
My only obstacle was the fact that the fifty pound luggage allowance from the States had not allowed me to bring wedding clothes with me to Spain. Nor had I thought to bring a fancy dress. But my Spanish friends here are the best: I felt like Cinderella. They lent me a dress and a hair curler, assisted me with the selection of shoes (heels a must) and found a flower for my hair. These are all essential for a Spanish wedding because the people get faaaaancy.

We drove to a small village called Campilla de Llerena. There we ate a lunch, took a siesta and prepared for the big night ahead. The family got ready and walked to the church behind the groom (novio) into the small chapel. The chapel was so small that the guests spilled outside the chapel and stood outside, straining for glances inside the chapel.

The bride (novia) came shortly after, followed by her family and friends. She made her way to the front of the church and the service began.

Signing the marriage license

The ceremony lasted for about an hour. There were no bridesmaids or groomsmen, but the family was always close to the front to show their support. I loved the Spanish guitar and the singers. Can’t wait to have it at my Spanish wedding (Just kidding mom!)

Once the ceremony was done, the true part of the wedding (the fiesta) began. We drove 20 minutes to a Salon Marcelo, a rural estate, which had been the home for many farmers before it was converted into a beautiful reception space. When we got to the reception outside, we were given our selection of delicious snacks and beverages. The trays never stopped coming my way. I am a Costco-lover: I always sample.

Once we entered the elegantly-decorated space inside, we were never hungry. They had two men cutting jamón throughout the entire meal. Then the plates started coming and never stopped. Two plates of jamón were in front of me and the waiter placed a third on top of the two others. There was a variety of lomo and cheeses, langostinos (shrimp), gambas (prawns). That all was just the beginning. That was followed up by bacalao (cod), apple sorbet, Secreto Iberico (pork). And a plate with three desserts. You don’t choose what you’d like. You get all of it. Que Rico!

After dinner lasted for a few hours, with more and more plates finding space in front of me, the open bar and the dancing began. The night went well into the morning and everyone left the wedding tired, happy and full.

Felicidades y enhorabuena to the happy couple!

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