This year was a great year for weddings. I was honored to meet so many wonderful couples who were starting a new life journey. My last wedding for 2019 was particularly touching.
Karen and Kiko (aka Phillip) have been together for 10 years. They both worked as nurses in a hospital in the Philippines. Kiko had a crush on Karen and their friendship blossomed into love. They began the process of applying to immigrate to Canada about 6 years ago. They were admitted under the skilled worker program one year ago. Before moving, Kiko formally asked Karen to marry him.
I asked them, why Canada? They answered because Canadians are kind and friendly. It was the type of country where you could build a future and a family.
So here I was on December 27, 2019, helping them build their future in a new strange land.
The wedding was held at the Bistro Le Forain, in Gatineau. It is a ideal for a small wedding with three separate rooms on the main floor. The decor is eclectic and the food was very tasty.
Kiko was the first to enter as part of the family procession. Hanging on the wall was a phone where his parents were on video from the Philippines. It was a very emotional moment for Kiko as tears streamed down his face.
Many more family members entered. Karen walked in with her parents also emotional.
The vows that Karen and Kiko exchange were funny and heartfelt. Of the many Filipino wedding rituals, they chose for me to perform the Cord ritual because it bound them together.
Dinner followed. An excellent three course meal of broccoli soup, chicken cordon bleu and seafood pasta.
What struck me during our conversations was that most people came from far and wide. There were guests from not so far like Toronto and others from New York City and San Francisco.
I left feeling really touched by the fact that Karen and Kiko, of all the places in the world they could settle, chose our country and our city to make their beginnings. It was a perfect wedding to reflect on the holiday spirit of love, giving, and kindness. A perfect way to end 2019.