May and June had been very rainy and they said summer had only arrived a week before we did. Everything was so green, the skies so blue, the breezes cool and, as promised, the cake was orange.
Cleverly ignoring all my advice they decided to prepare most of the food themselves. So brothers and sisters flocked to the big white kitchen and as fans whirled over head they marinated 30 pounds of flank steak, peeled and roasted pounds of shrimp, prepared sesame noodles and orzo pasta salads, threaded balls of marinated mozzarella and cherry tomatoes on skewers, chopped endless vegetables and cubed loaves of bread for a bread salad and made a good dent in the 12 gallons of vodka. I'm betting there is no cranberry juice available in Pennsylvania at the moment.
The only food prepared outside the kitchen was the cake, a platter of beautiful wedding cookies and several poached salmon that were served with a dill sauce and capers.
We were invited for 5:30, there was an hour and half of cocktails and appetizers before Anne's oldest brother Doug led her down the stairs of the cottage across the lawn and down to the dock through a small crowd of beaming relatives and friends.
It was a short and sweet ceremony, the lake was calm, the sun lit them from behind and from the house to the right a baby cried. So did we.
Then there was music and dancing on the wrap around porch. People filled plates and sat outside at tables, in vintage wicker chairs or on the big wooden porch swing.
We made it until midnight. The rest are made of sterner stuff and the party continued till 4:00am.
The next day was full of swimming and kayaking, eating and more eating and further consumption of the vodka. The beer and the jagermeister were all gone. We all got to know one another a little better and I got an hour nap in the big front bedroom with an old quilt on the bed and breezes blowing in through the windows.
Sunday morning we packed up and left the celebrants behind in the beautiful house by the green lake and drove down, down, down to Philadelphia for further adventures and iced lattes and hotter temps.
It was the best of times.