Secondhand bliss

Drunk on the happiness of others. Basking in the glow, they call it. Got back from Todd and Juli's wedding this afternoon. Had a great time. Having been to so many weddings this month, I've realized that when two people get married, they pull this cone of happiness behind them as they burrow into the future with hands clasped. And all of us, family and friends, are sucked into this whirling pool of joy and memory and good wishes. It was the perfect way to pull me out of post Sept 11 depression.
Among other things, the whole weekend allowed me to get to know some folks I'd either met only a few times or not at all. Aaron, Mark, Eric. Jen, Sidney (Sydney--spelling, Juli?), Tina, Denise, the other Mark, Doug and Isil, Joel and Barbara, and lots of others. Good people. I got to know Bellingham, a charming town up north in Washington. We stayed at the Chrysalis Inn, a very plush hotel along the water.
One moment in particular will stay with me. The day of the wedding, in the early afternoon, I found the two of them huddled together in the hallway outside our room, the day of the wedding, making last minute plans. Answering questions like "How should we be introduced?" I realized then, they're probably two of the only folks I know who could pull off a wedding in such a short time and be completely comfortable with all their arrangements. Juli has an impulsive streak, and Todd is a fast mover, especially armed with the Internet. We might bounce around the idea of entering a race, and 5 minutes later Todd will send e-mail saying he has registered. A few hours before we were due at the manor, they were nailing down last minute issues like a team. I thought to myself that this was how the whole event happened, just the two of them talking, figuring it all out, making decisions. I imagine they will work together in the same way as husband and wife.
From time to time, I'd look over at Todd, and I could see that he was ready.
Both brides I've witnessed this month are awesome camera subjects. Very expressive and photogenic. Many people are not physically emotive. Not that you have to be good looking, but at least interesting and physically honest, open. It's one reason celebrities make good subjects for photographers. They're accustomed to being scrutinized by the camera's eye, and they either remain natural in its gaze or play to it. Actually, both Todd and Juli were great camera subjects. I can't wait to get my few rolls of film back. Both are very comfortable with cameras on them. No poses, no cringing. I love people like that. Juli is the type of girl that even other girls describe as "gorgeous," which is like winning an award from your peers as opposed to some third party.
As a groomsmen, I actually didn't have too much to do. Todd was all over the details. I really felt like a bodyguard for Todd and Juli.
Juli, someday many years from now, I imagine I'll be sitting in a cafe (let's say Paris) with you and Todd, having a drink, sharing some laughs, and reminiscing about old times. And I'll tell you the story of the time a long time ago when Todd and I were driving somewhere, and I asked him if he found any girls at work interesting (because it was a long drive, and this is one of those subjects that comes up from time to time in the company of single men) and he said, I met this girl in orientation, and she just has the greatest smile.