Aussie accents combined forces with accents from Sth Africa, England, Portugal and New Zealand for a global type wedding for our oldest son, Jon and his fiance Kerri. Different traditions, from several countries, were all combined in this wonderful celebration.
Travel is one of my passions as it broadens my knowledge, makes me keen to learn more about the countries I visit and gives me an understanding of the digital and global divide, that no amount of reading would give. My children have all travelled extensively, and the two older sons have lived and worked in London over the past 5 years. Hence, it was no surprise that Jonathan our older son, announced that he had met a girl in London. Kerri, however, was from Johannesburg in Sth Africa and on a working visa for 2 years. Once they were engaged much excited planning went into the wedding that was to be in or near Johannesburg.
On Boxing Day, Dec 26th, my husband and I set off for Jo’burg from Australia, with some extended family members for a 3 1/2 week journey travelling around Sth Africa. One week was spent in Jo’burg, another in Simonstown, near Cape Town, an amazing weekend in Muldersdrift, in the Cradle of Mankind, for the wedding and finally an 8 day safari to the Rhino and Lion Nature Reserve and Pilanesberg Game Reserve. Our other family members arrived 5 days later. Jason, the second son, who was to be best man started to email and express some concern about even making it to the wedding, due to the heavy snowfalls in London. His school was closed for two days prior to the wedding. However, it was with much relief that he was able to fly out of Heathrow and land safely in Jo’burg.
The highlight of this holiday for us, was the wedding, set in the most amazing, romantic setting possible. Kerri, Jon and Kerri’s family had
worked hard to ensure that everything was perfect and so it was! All those guests who had travelled afar had the opportunity to meet friends, family and others prior to the ceremony. Most guests stayed the night prior to and night of the wedding at Glenburn Lodge. It was the perfect setting as it had a several swimming pools, a large jaccuzzi, tennis courts and many other outdoor activities allowing us to mingle, socialize and connect.
The Lodge is set amongst volcanic mountains, gorgeous gardens, beautiful entertaining areas, excellent conference facilities and is the ideal location for a romantic and memorable wedding.
In the Saturday evening, Kerri’s folks treated all guests to a traditional Afrikaan’s braai, with boerewurs, creamed corn, cold baked beans, bread rolls, tossed salad and spiced grated beetroot. A lapa at the Lodge provided the ideal setting.
The wedding ceremony was held at 4:30pm on Sunday, January 10th. The day was overcast, warm but very pleasant. Kerri looked stunning in a simple but elegant white dress and was accompanied by two of her old school friends, as bridesmaids. (Both these girls work on cruise ships!). Jon had Jason, his brother as best man and one of his university and ex St Hilda’s friends as the groomsman. Our little two year old grandson Will became the page boy and Kerri’s niece Maddison, the flower girl.
The setting was all that could be imagined for a stunning, romantic and idealic wedding. The Crocodile River flowed past, the gardens with roses etc were in full flower and the fountains cooling. The chapel was draped with white and the girls had hung hand made bejewelled hearts around the perimeter. These were purchased from the African Arts and Crafts markets.
Guests did not have too walk far to the reception as it was just across the bridge from the chapel. The flowers were absolutely beautiful and the substantial food – a three course meal, commencing with seafood platters – extremely tasty. A DJ provided disco music to complete the celebratory nature of the occasion. Truly a day and night to remember.
The only disaster was a lost wedding ring later on in the evening, but one of the guests soon found that.
Global traditions shared:-
- members of the Australian contingent placed horse shoes on Kerri’s arm, (Sth Africans had not heard of this tradition)
- guests left the chapel whilst the register was signed, in order to line up, and greet the newly married couple with rose petals as they exited the chapel.
- male guests give the bridegroom a hard time, when he tries to make his speech. Sound from the microphone became quite distorted and the guests sang loudly over Jon’s speech in its early stages. Normally, the male guests would also have sat on the floor in front of Jonathan and thrown things at him and generally heckled, but they were a little kinder to this Aussie!
- The cake top disappeared during the night, not to be seen again. It is Portuguese tradition to do so and it will be returned on the night of their first wedding anniversary. Kerri had the cake top made in London, featuring her and Jon, with laptop tucked under his arm. It was gorgeous and the Aussie guests were horrified to note that it had disappeared, only to be told of the Portuguese custom.
See more Photos of the wedding