A couple of days ago my now husband and I eloped got married, sans 120 of our closest friends sweating in suits/getting eaten by their heels or huddling under an umbrella to escape the sun. We did however have 21 Massai warriors and a small African choir to keep us company. No biggie.

Additionally the Massai Justice of the Peace was kind enough to include his wife in our ceremony – lovely right. I guess I’d also be up for an all-expenses paid trip to an African lodge perched on the edge of a gigantic crater that holds lions, zebra, rhino, wildebeest, hippo, etc…if I would actually stand next to my husband as he conducted the ceremony, we’ll that’s not something I think I’d do. I’d rather go laze at the pool, cocktail in one hand book in the other. But each to their own and her own was to be part of our ceremony.

Now onto the ceremony – after being lead from the top of the stairs (so slowly I almost got a whole year older in the process) through the marriage archway by the Massai Jem and I traded very personal and very excellent vows atop the world’s largest crater, right in the heart of darkest Africa. Then we were danced for and sung too and also made to dance and sing ourselves by the King and Queen Massai – yes, this totally happened. I’ve also concluded that I’m much better at dancing what with my African butt at all, but Jem is conclusively better at the Massai jump. It was without a doubt the best wedding I’ve ever said I do at 🙂

Now, we did elope but not in the traditional sense of the word, because we told all our close friends and family prior to the day and invited them to join us – virtually – for the occasion. And a lot of them managed too considering the whacky time differences, blazing 40 degree temperatures in Sydney and overall rubbish internet connection we had transmitting the live stream.

My mother-in-law and new sisters drank champagne at some ungodly hour of the morning and cried through the jittery (connection) exchanged vows (our vows where water tight).

We had friends who stayed in bed because it was one in the morning (hopefully with their best wedding PJ’s on), some who sat on the kitchen floor because that’s where the best connection was and as an added plus it felt a little cooler than any other room.

My sister was supposed to present at a conference but instead, told her boss to push her time slot, sequestered her Tech Director’s computer “because he had two screens and better connection” and sobbed her way through the vows, but missed the kiss when the connection failed despite her snot filled pleas with the machine.

All through the proceedings all these people held a running commentary in a Facebook group message, which I have to say should happen at more weddings. Wedding commentary is untapped genius, your guests are hilarious – I’ve just read the transcript and am still in tears!

All in all we were the furthest away from all civilization and really amazed that we could even livestream the show but yet we felt so connected to the people that really mattered.

We then went onto to surprise the rest of the world friends with the announcement by a swift orderly change of our facebook relationship statuses and posted a handy link to our handy site that explained all. If you wanted a gander – this is it.

The site, however is single-handidly the reason we almost got divorced within 24 hours of our ceremony. Jem and I spent an ardous 4 hours the next night, sitting at a stinking hot bar fighting with the internet and secretly with each other. The reason we were stuck at the bar and not in our air-conditioned room? Well, because that’s the only place the internet worked in this particular lodge, so there we sat, getting righteously abused by mosquitoes and all just to load up the 4 photos of the day on the site. No amount of Dawa (a very sweet, very alcoholic Tanzanian drink) was helping the furiousness we were feeling for the particularly rubbish connection we had at that moment in time. Bear in mind we had built the whole site prior to leaving for Africa but all we needed to do was stick up a couple of shots of the day. IT TOOK 4 HOURS.

Thankfully, we got it right in the end and fingers crossed for the rest of our lives.