Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Two Hearts: One Love

The ride from Hannah Miller's home to the Orange County Courthouse was a bit nerve-wracking, since the rain just wouldn't let up. Hannah's roommate, Caeley, drove Hannah to the courthouse. When they arrived, Caeley didn't want to leave the car since it was raining so hard. She never did get out of the car, remaining there through the whole wedding ceremony. When I got to the courthouse steps, Hannah was standing in the front entry with a small crowd of men surrounding her, admiring her dress. It was cold, so she said we should all get inside. As she made her way through security, a man complimented her on her dress and asked, "Who is the lucky man?" Hannah replied, "I honestly don't know him." She wasn't lying.
Upstairs in the Marriage License office there was a huge crowd of people all waiting for her arrival. People applauded when she entered. Then we all waited for the groom; notoriously late to his own performances. Couples were escorted periodically into the small room where the wedding ceremonies take place. With everyone talking excitedly, one of the court clerks finally shouted out, "Would you all please quiet down? We are trying to perform some REAL marriages in the next room!" I was wedged up in a tight spot, sketching right next to the door to the ceremony room. Every time the door was opened, I would have to lean to one side since my sketch bag would be hit by the opening door. Whenever a new couple exited the room, our group clapped and cheered. When a new couple would walk into the room, however, everyone was silent. Hannah said, "That is because we were all judging them." I started to get worried that Hannah might be left at the altar without a groom, but about a half hour late, Brian finally showed up. He apologized saying traffic had been crazy because of the rain. The waiting continued.
Finally, the court clerk called out the names of Hannah and Brian. About 30 people squeezed into the small ceremony room while others crowded in the doorway trying to peek in. I stood on a chair so I could see the couple and sketch.
Logan Donahoo gave away the bride and from this point on it was a traditional ceremony. Hannah struggled with her veil during the beginning of the ceremony and apologized to the clerk. When Brian was asked if he would "Take this woman" he hesitated for the longest time. He finally decided to simply say, "I do." Jeremy Seghers held the ring which was fashioned from a marriage license that had been denied to a same- sex couple earlier that afternoon. Brian said that the bouquet should be for the same sex couple who were standing at the foreground of all the action. When the ceremony was over, Brian stomped on a plastic cup and people shouted out, "Mazel tov!" Then, Brian and Hannah shook hands and went their separate ways. Hannah of course, returned to her boyfriend Jack Fields, while Brian faced an increasing barrage of interviews from local and national media. Perhaps, someday, love, will be the only criterion for people to join their hearts in marriage.

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

I'm sitting here with tears in my eyes...why is that?

Hannah said...

speechless

travelingsuep said...

Fabulous reportage. I read the Cinderella part on USk and had to hurry over to find out what happened.

The combination of words and beautiful sketches on this whole story is amazing.

Lou Belcher said...

Thanks... I've thoroughly enjoyed your sketches and write up of Hannah's story...

FlaCracker54 said...

Good Job Hannah wish I had been there. Love the write up & all the sketches........

Thor said...

Thanks everybody, this is a unique Orlando Story.