At a West Point Wedding-- 10/14/03

Nancy's youngest brother got married on Sunday. (We joke about him being the "baby" brother, but he is in his early thirties, a captain in the U.S. Marine Corps. Still, he is the youngest of ten and the last one to marry.)

We set off early Sunday morning -- oh, okay, so it was almost ten o'clock by the time we actually left home -- in Jill's Honda Accord -- drove in rainy weather through much of Connecticut, but the storm was breaking up as we neared New York State and by the time we crossed the Hudson River on the Bear Mountain Bridge it was becoming a sunny day.

The wedding was at West Point (and, it being a military base, there was an id-check by armed soldiers at the main gate and then a second check just inside the base where they asked for the trunk and the engine compartment to be opened for inspection) and the reception was held at the West Point Club. The lobby was decorated with framed dance cards from mililtary balls held there in the past, the 1920's, 1930's... There was a cocktail reception at five and then at six we entered the grand ballroom, huge windows overlooking the Hudson River, a magnificent room with a spectacular view.
We took lots of pictures -- Nancy had a 35mm and we had one of those single use cameras and, of course, we had our Olympus digital. Here are two pictures Jill snapped of Nancy & me on the dance floor. (More pix in next entry )

Naturally there were lots of Marines there... some in dress uniforms (as was the groom) to provide an archway of drawn swords. And lots of family. As I noted, Nancy is one of ten, so any family gathering tends to have a fair number of people. And the next generation was there... the few little ones who are still in elementary school are outnumbered by the teenagers, and then there are the college students (like Jeremy and Gillian) and the five who are out of college (and two of them are married -- the one whose wedding had brought Nancy and I to Charlestown by train was there with his pregnant wife -- and another who supplied two of her three children to be the flower girl and ring-bearer).

When the official festivities ended we moved the party over to the bar at the Hotel Thayer (which is where many of us were staying). [Jeremy didn't want to stay so he got a ride back to Rhode Island with a cousin and his girlfriend who also live here -- except he had left his key chain in the back of Jill's car so he couldn't get in the house and he couldn't even drive any of our cars, so he had to crash at a friend's house until we got home Monday afternoon.] It was a bit strange having my daughter buy me a beer.

Monday was a beautiful sunny fall day (and with sufficient quantities of aspirin and coffee I was able to cope with it) -- we stopped in Yorktown, NY for lunch (Nancy's home town in the sense that it is where she lived when she attended junior high and high school) and stopped to visit Castle Crag near Meriden, Connecticut. We have driven past it for many years -- a rather medieval looking stone tower on the top of a high cliff -- and Nancy would tell me how she had loved to visit it with her grandparents (who had lived in that area) when she was a little girl, but we were always in a hurry to get to Rhode Island or to return to upstate New York, so we never stopped. (I did attempt to stop one time when it was just Jeremy and me but it was winter time and the road up the mountain was closed to traffic.) So this time we got off the highway and drove up to the top. Apparently a place of interest to climbers and to budding geologists as well as to those who just want to take in the view. Great view.... the trees are showing colors through that area, I imagine it will be very colorful in another week or two.

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