SAVANNAH + NIK
We met at a wedding that I wasn’t supposed to be at. I was supposed to be going with an ex-boyfriend and the whole thing was too weird, they were his friends anyway. But on the morning of the wedding I woke up and had a really strong feeling that I needed to go to that wedding. As soon as I got there, my ex skipped off into the forest with an 18-year-old blonde. I was mortified and realized I’d made a dumb decision. It could have gone one of two ways. Either I could mope around miles away from home or I could pull my socks up and have a good time. I chose the latter option and bumped into Nik on the dance floor, a clearing in a beautiful forest. It turned out that the wedding was being held at what was then his home. He built the eco-house himself for $300 out of recycled stuff. It was like a fairytale. My first thought when I saw him was “oh there you are.”
We were both very carried away by the magic of the wedding; there were fairylights in trees and the moon was hanging heavy in the sky above us. Recognizing one another seemed totally normal at the time even though we had never met before that night. The day after the wedding he hitchhiked for eight hours to come and see me before I left on a business trip to New York. When I saw him on my doorstep I ran outside and put my arms around him and knew that he’d be the father of my babies. We never really dated; we started living together right away and it’s been that way since. It can be really intense at times because he is a wild adventure man and I am a city girl but we have found a way to co-exist with relative smoothness.
He started talking about marriage almost immediately, though he was vehemently against it until we met. He proposed on Christmas Day in front of my whole family. I had made everyone’s Christmas gifts that year, so I had been so into explaining my gifts that I hadn’t opened any of my own. I opened his gift last and it was a big box shaped parcel. Inside it was a smaller box and then a smaller one and an even smaller one after that. In the very smallest box was a silk pouch and inside that was a dried rose. I took the rose out of the pouch and it glinted. He had dried the rose around the ring. I pulled it out and burst into tears.
We had our wedding in Devon at his old school that’s now a private house. It is a beautiful, old, slightly shabby English house with a huge lake and a little chapel in the grounds. The morning of the wedding I ran about like a mad woman juggling the baby and trying to get ready. It wasn't glamorous at all. We had three ceremonies: a legal one, a blessing in the chapel, and a pagan ceremony with our friend who is a druid, under a huge oak tree by the lake. My dad had my old music teacher play “Here Comes The Bride” on the organ. Nik’s son Java, a friend’s daughter, and our baby Moses (who was 6-months-old) were our wedding party. The boys wore linen trousers, striped shirts, and I made them cream felted waistcoats.
After the ceremonies, we had a big feast-style buffet with fire roasted salmon, loads of salads, and summer fruits. The party took place in a Kata, which is basically three giant tipis all joined together with a huge central fire pit. The next morning, I woke up at 6 a.m. with our six-month-old baby and took a walk down to the wedding tent. Everyone was still awake and grooving.