Saturday, August 5, 2017

Summer 2017: Day 75, Vacation Day 7

Two days, two weddings.

The boys stayed with Lori's parents at the hotel in Franklin, and we stayed again with Sara in Milwaukee. Sara, who rarely gets to cook for people, was ecstatic to make us breakfast. I walked to the nearby Pick 'n' Save -- the one that opened in 1994 when Lori and I were living on the east side -- to buy ingredients for homemade egg muffins. They were delicious and a good way to start the day that was bound to get busier.

Mike's wedding was in Lake Villa, Ill., about 45 minutes from Milwaukee. The weather couldn't be better today after the chilly wedding Friday. The location was nice, and the sun was shining for the ceremony. I got to see all my high school friends for the first time since Tom's funeral last year, and we toasted to his memory before the pre-wedding responsibilities began. Mike kept entrusting me to mix him Jim Beam and lemonades, and I was concerned I wasn't making them strong enough. We took pictures and helped with the preparations, then got to hang out in a groomsmen's room before the ceremony.

The wedding was great. Tim almost had me laughing from the start when he whispered to Nosek, on the other side of me on the stage, that John was on the clock for fantasy football. I got it together and didn't burst out laughing. Mike surprised everyone in the middle of the ceremony by beginning to sing a song, but after the first line, two people in the audience took over. Then a violinist stood up and started playing. Then another singer joined in, followed by a tenor. It was one of the coolest things I've ever seen at a wedding, and it had the guests in tears.

The reception was wicked fun, of course. I danced a lot, more than perhaps at any other wedding for a long while. Mike had the DJ play Nitzer Ebb's "Join in the Chant," which took our group way back to high school. I was exhausted and a little drunk after that. Lori drove home, with a stop in Kenosha for McDonald's. The Big Mac was a great ending to a great day.

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