It’s not often that you get to say “I do” twice to the same person, yet on 21st August in Shepperton, UK, that’s exactly what Mark and I did.
Well – to be absolutely correct about it, we actually said “Ja” the first time around and not much else! The German registry office service includes no vows or promises, so for this reason - along with the fact that I had both wrists in plaster (another story) – we decided to do it all again a year later in a language we could understand and with the added bonus that the bride could hold a glass of bubbly and eat the wedding breakfast without being fed!
A second ceremony also gave us a fantastic opportunity to 10:10 our blessing, so that’s exactly what we did. Some things were easy: most of our guests who flew in from the UK last year to Germany could this year drive or take the train as the ceremony and evening venue were right next door to each other and within walking distance from the station. We encouraged car sharing amongst guests and the happy couple (ie us) travelled by train from Berlin to London (and back again!).
Luckily we (just about) managed to fit into our wedding outfits from last year so these were “recycled”. The wedding breakfast included no red meat or cheese and absolutely no bottled water was available (just plenty of European wine of course!) And to ensure that we didn’t receive 20 toasters or other excess articles, we requested that people sign up to 10:10 as their present to us. In return they received an Age of Stupid DVD
and a 10:10 tag (as seen in all the celeb mags!)
Some parts were more challenging. We encouraged the reception venue to do an energy walkaround
but that wasn’t possible. So we discussed with them several of the things we could have an influence on (menu and water plus asking for seasonal/regional) and we chatted with several staff about what we were doing and gave them an Age of Stupid DVD
Halfway through the evening I realised that they had (cunningly disguised) heat lamps on outside so I rushed to the manager to get them IMMEDIATELY turned off. And the next morning I embarrassed half my guests by asking for the electric toaster grill to be switched off as breakfast was long since over!
So, apart from everyone thinking we are mad (in a good way we think!) we hope that we have made a positive impression on the hotel and our guests and that just a few more people work towards reducing their carbon footprint.