A Royal Wedding

December 22nd, 2009 Posted in culture, entertainment

Written by Shanie

It is no secret that Latinos are not afraid to party. Whether from Argentina, Peru, Uruguay or Chile, there is one thing that natives of all Latin countries have in common…the wee hours of the morning are not of much concern.

Our first trip to Argentina was for our honeymoon back in 2002. We splurged on our hotel while in Buenos Aires and stayed at the Marriott Plaza San Martin off of Florida.

A beautiful, high-society ambiance with a palace style decor, it was obvious that the Marriot was host to not only wealthy guests, but also lavish parties. One particular evening out, we came back to the hotelĀ  from a Buenos Aires-style-of-partying-until-7-in-the-morning, only to cross paths with a large group of elegantly dressed 60 to 70 year olds leaving a wedding.

And they didn’t even look tired.

It impressed me and left me hoping that I someday would have the opportunity to experience a South American wedding.

Well, Jamie and I finally got our chance.

This weekend we were invited to a royal wedding of sorts in Santiago, Chile.

Santiago Andes

Jamie’s step-mom, Carmencita, is Chilean. Her brother, Jorge, as well as other in-laws by way of her sister’s husband, happen to be high-ranking military officials, which in Chile is something of mighty importance (an interesting fact, considering they aren’t involved in much militarily speaking). Through the enveloping vitality of family in Latin culture we were invited to Jorge’s daughter’s wedding.

I must say that the experience was exactly what I had imagined.

santiago sunset

In true Latin-style, the couple was married in a beautiful Roman Catholic church. There were oodles of flowers. The stunning bride was dressed in an intricate gown detailed with lace and beading. And the priest had an impressive likeness to the Pope.

But I must say it was the reception that really took the cake, no pun intended.

It was located in an elite hotel that made us feel as if Queen Victoria was in attendance — complete with an under-the-automobile mirror device to check for car bombs.

They served caviar for an appetizer…a you-can-cut-it-with-a-butter-knife tenderloin steak was presented for the main course…a buffet table of desserts accompanied the six layer wedding cake presented with the artistry of a painting.

Once we had our fill of delectable treats, the dancing started with a true Waltz done by the bride and groom and respective parents.

Then the party really started.

The music was pumped up and everyone hit the dance floor. In fact, Jamie and I were pushed off the sidelines a couple of times by ambitious 50-somethings getting their groove on. It was classic.

A few hours into dancing, the bride and groom came out onto the dance floor dressed up in gag-wear — he with a rubber chicken on his head, she with over-sized clown glasses and a pink wig. Costume accessories were passed out for all to wear. The 20-somethings bumped up the energy level. The older adults caught the buzz and got into the mix. It didn’t matter that the clock had long ago passed two in the morning.

We ended up leaving after 4 am with more than half the party still going strong.

A great time was had by all, that is for sure…

In fact, two days later I am still sore from dancing the night away.

So, I would like to say a big “Thanks!” to the young couple from Santiago that offered the chance for me to see how weddings are done Latin-style. I am so impressed!

Wishing you both a path of joy and an abundance of love in your life’s journey together…

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