Laura and Ben were married at the beautiful Mandalay reception centre in Northcote Melbourne on 20th March, 2010. It is a delightful venue now run by a very friendly Italian family who provide exceptional service and delicious food.
Laura and Ben told me their story of how they met, as you will see, they were both very determined to make this relationship happen! The following is part of their personalised marriage ceremony.
Laura and Ben first met 3 years ago in Federation Square at a bar. They chatted for quite a while and were getting along very well. However Laura decided it was time to go home but before she left she spontaneously gave Ben a kiss and ran out with her friends. Poor Ben was left standing there with no contact details. Ben was not to be outdone but had to chase her across Flinders Street before he managed to grab her and kiss her in return! He got contact details this time and soon after they began seeing each other regularly and were very comfortable together. Ben was in his last year at university and even though he really wanted the relationship to continue, he kept warning Laura not to get too involved with him as he knew he would have to leave Melbourne and would be travelling a lot with his work as a geologist.
I asked Ben what he liked about Laura. “I love seeing her beaming smile and hearing her loud laugh. You can always spot her in a crowd with her blonde hair. We never have any boring times and she makes me feel very special. I have a lot of fun with Laura. She puts up with the fact that I have to be away a lot. I love coming home to her, she looks after me when I’m sick as I am such a woos and I love the way she cooks!”
Laura likes the way Ben is very caring, kind and sincere. He means what he says. “Ben has taught me a lot about myself” she told me. He helped me grow into a better person and has taught me things I never knew before. I love the way he asked me to move to Western Australia, I would never have moved to WA if it wasn’t for him and had the experiences of working in a remote community with indigenous people. We had two years solid in WA, two years just him and I, that’s a testament to our bond and relationship. We had a lot of ups and downs but we got through it together.”
Ben’s brother Callan read the beautiful poem by Pablo Neruda, Sonnet 17
I don’t love you as if you were the salt-rose, topaz or arrow of carnations that propagate fire: I love you as certain dark things are loved, secretly, between the shadow and the soul. I love you as the plant that doesn’t bloom and carries hidden within itself the light of those flowers, and thanks to your love, darkly in my body lives the dense fragrance that rises from the earth. I love you without knowing how, or when, or from where, I love you simply, without problems or pride: I love you in this way because I don’t know any other way of loving but this, in which there is no I or you, so intimate that your hand upon my chest is my hand, so intimate that when I fall asleep it is your eyes that close.
Laura follows Ben wherever his work takes them and at present they are living in the north of Australia and have three beautiful daughters all blonde like Laura!
I had the pleasure of officiating at the marriage of Laura’s sister Gemma last year.
Stay tuned for Helen and Stephen’s story next week!