Yes, it happened! The bride was beaming (definitely not beamy; there was a 5k race on wedding morning, good grief), the vineyard was amazing, and as predicted, the bride would have beat the pants off Martha Stewart in the “Apprentice Wedding Planner” show. Donald Trump would have become besotted with her, and perhaps we would now have access to a little “cottage” in the Seychelles. But here is the REAL story, as it seems to always unfold in my family. 

I delivered a happy, healthy dog (ok, there was a bit of swelling in her back leg; nothing significant—it had been there for ages) to my next door neighbor, who thank the Lord is observant, proactive, a nurse, and also full of love for my dog. We left town blithely, enjoying the fifteen dollar bags of Chex Mix and forty dollar stale sandwiches on the flight. We arrived in good spirits and full of enthusiasm in Los Angeles a full week before the wedding, ready to do the bride’s bidding. This involved loading various rental cars with, (and this is an incomplete list), cases of monogrammed EVERYTHING: candy, water bottles, golf balls and tees, wine lanyards (that’s a story all in itself), T shirts, cases of the “wedding” wine (Frederick Henderson, a combo of their middle names), and one hundred and sixty Granny Smith apples, in their virginal, un-monogrammed state. This took four cars and six family members from seven different states. 

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, that swelling in the dog’s foot became massive and exploded all over my kindly neighbor’s sofa. With a trail of blood resembling what the Manson family created, the dog then crashed and had to be rushed to the vet hospital, where four wonderful and talented vets spent the next week trying everything to save her. They had to tell me what was occurring, and I nearly required the services of some seedy local drug dealers to get me through the next few harrowing days. Good news! They didn’t amputate any of her limbs or digits; about five thousand twitter friends said prayers, and she pulled through a few days before the wedding. I may need to go into rehab, but I could really relax and enjoy the wedding! 

The wedding was enhanced by the Hollywood makeup artist who was hired to transform all the young girls into beauties worthy of the big screen. Me? I looked like Gina Lollabrigida. Seriously. False eyelashes and those Spanx corset things can do wonders. However, after looking at the wedding tear sheets, I have signed the Weight Watchers pledge once more. 

Oh, yes. The trip home. Did you hear about Joe Biden coming to Chicago and ruining everything for morning travelers, and then tornadoes coming in to destroy travel plans for everybody else in America? We were in the afternoon group. We spent the night in the airport, finally managing to get the one last hotel room within a twenty mile radius of O’Hare. There was a reason for it: this room had a broken air conditioner. But we got to lie down and sweat for three hours before going back to O’Hare to battle for a flight home. 

Important lessons were learned. First, professional makeup artists can turn chubby matrons into the aforementioned Italian bombshell. Spanx makes a really good corset that holds in your stomach after you have eaten café lattes, scones, homemade banana muffins, croissants, and Greek yogurt for breakfast for a week, followed by seven glasses of wine at dinner. False eyelashes are the BOMB. Of course, you have to hire that Hollywood makeup artist to apply them, along with eight layers of various creams, pink stuff, and eye shadow in order to achieve the effect. 

The cake balls were delicious. However, I only had three, due to the massive amounts of delicious wine that they have just for the tasting at vineyards! Finally, I must give credit for the entire mind blowing event (sans flesh eating virus) to my incredibly beautiful and talented daughter, who was offered a job by the wedding planner… 

Martha Stewart should be worried. VP Biden should be ashamed of himself. And four dedicated veterinarians in Waynesville, Ohio, should get some sort of Nobel Prize, Academy Award, Recognition from the American Veterinary Association, or at least a five million dollar winning lottery ticket….

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