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An Impressive Wedding

PORTUGAL | Monday, 25 August 2014 | Views [1427]

“I know Honey, let’s get married in a 600 year old UNESCO World Heritage Site! That will impress all your friends!”

Ok, maybe that’s not how the conversation would have gone, but that is definitely what had eventually happened. And not just impressing the bride’s friends.

Jeronimos Monastery High View

I was wandering around the Jerónimos Monastery in Lisbon, Portugal when a parade of suited men and dolled-up women excitedly entered the adjoining church.. They all took seats at the front of the hall and burst into chatter. I continued my explorations and found myself in the upstairs section surrounding the grassed courtyard area. I walked through a large door and ended up standing on the mezzanine floor of the cathedral. I had a brilliant view back towards the well-dressed entourage and decided to lean on the hand railing and people watch for a few minutes.

Church Hall

As soon as I had located my viewing platform a musician started playing deeply hypnotic chords on the massive organ in the corner of the room. The notes echoed throughout the hall and pulsated through my body. People rose from their pews and turned towards the back of the room. Despite my earlier predictions, it is only at this moment that I could confirm that I was witnessing a wedding.

First the flower girl and ring bearer walked down towards the small crowd, both dressed impeccably. I wondered if this was their first wedding they had ever been to. At such a young age, I would imagine so. In the halls of Jerónimos Monastery I think the grandness of the location was lost on the children. However that didn’t make it any less special to watch them try to keep their steps in sync as they approached the front of the church.

Jeronimos Monastery Courtyard

Then it was time for the bride to make her entrance. Even from such a high vantage point I could hear the collective gasps the guests let out as she came into the church. She must have looked beautiful, but I could not see her face from my position. The tail of her dress flowed smoothly along the ground behind her. Her movements were graceful.

Church Bride

The priest then entered from the side of the chapel. He was wearing a white robe glistening with apparent gold and jewel encrusted decorations. His hat reminded me of something the Pope would wear. He looked almost as mesmerising as the bride.

When the father of the bride passed on his daughter to the groom the music stopped playing. The procession commenced and I decided to make my exit. I didn’t feel the need to stand around and watch these two people announce their love for each other, although I was happy for them. I looked around the chapel once more and back towards the bride. I nodded in her direction and thought that all who had been in the room would no doubt remember this extravagant affair. Not just her friends would be impressed but so would this stranger who had timed his visit to the Monastery perfectly.

Tower Of Belem

Jeronimos Monastery Through Pillars

Tags: europe, lisbon, portugal

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