I did something yesterday that was so outrageous, so completely not me, that I’m still trying to come to terms with it.
I started my wedding file.
Keep in mind I’m not engaged. Or soon-to-be-engaged. Or in a relationship that might lead to an engagement. Or currently dating someone. Or currently thinking about dating something. (Ok, the last one is a bit of a stretch. I mean, I love to think about dating Matthew Morrison, but that’s about as realistic as me getting married in the near future.)
So where did the wedding file come from?
I blame my mother.
My mom is a history buff. Actually, that’s putting it nicely. In reality, she has an unhealthy obsession with General Marquis de Lafayette, and there isn’t a battlefield, historical marker or old house she hasn’t visited in Ohio. So naturally, when I had to go to Kent this past weekend to turn in my apartment keys, it couldn’t be a quick trip. Oh no, my mom was determined to jam as many historical outings into our two-day trip as possible. Along the way we visited the Mansfield Reformatory or, that place where “Shawshank Redemption” was filmed. While I was inhaling enough lead paint to knock out a dozen pregnant ladies, my mom was taking a million pictures, hoping an orb might show up on one. She also waved her hand in every cell. When I asked why, she said she was testing for hot spots. (My mom thinks she’s a member of TAPS.) We also stopped in Orville, Ohio, the birthplace of Smucker’s. Orville is now home to a giant Smucker’s store and not much else. After we left my mom said, “Someone had to rule the world. It might as well have been Smucker’s.”
All joking aside, my mom can plan a good trip. The best part of this trip–besides the lead paint, ghost hunting and walls of jam–was the Stan Hywet house. It’s the former home of F.A. Seiberling, the founder of Goodyear. I don’t know how to describe it, so I’ll have to show you:
They don't call it the little Biltmore for nothing.
Did I mention the backyard?
Oh yeah, that's a pond. IN THE BACKYARD.
I fell in love with it immediately. I loved the “Secret Garden” themed landscape, the brick Tudor style architecture and even the smell: greenery, flowers, dirt, nature. When I learned that a wedding was taking place there that day I considered it a sign. One day I will get married here, I told myself.
I sound totally crazy right? I sound like one of those girls who has her entire wedding planned before age nine. But here’s the thing: every girl is like this. For some it’s the perfect wedding, for others it’s the perfect family, the perfect house, the perfect job. In reality women think about all these things. I know I do. I know when I get married I want to wear blue shoes. I know I want my first house to have hardwood floors. I know I want to name two of my four future children after Beatles’ songs. I know I want to be a writer, a world traveler and an even better cook.
It’s weird to say this out loud, especially the part about my future wedding and family. (It’s funny, I’m more comfortable talking about my career goals rather than my personal goals considering it was opposite for women 40 years ago.) But I guess it’s all supposed to be a bit weird and unpredictable. One day we all wake up and find the perfect job, the perfect mate, the perfect home or the perfect wedding location.
Maybe on my next trip with my mom I’ll finally find the perfect pair of jeans. Now that would definitely be something to file away.