Emily + Yiannis
We met in NYC playing on a coed Volleyball team. I thought that he had the sweetest face I had ever seen. After our second game I lied about what train I was taking home, so I could take the subway with him. I went way too far into Brooklyn before getting off at my fake stop. It was totally worth it.
After a few weekly volleyball games, we started emailing. He asked me out on a Sunday for the following Thursday, which was Valentine’s Day. I said yes, wondering if he realized, because he's not American. I later learned that he had no idea — until a coworker found out that he was going on a date with an American girl and bought flowers for him to bring to me and made reservations at two different restaurants. At around 2pm I got a message from him saying "Hello Valentine" and asking me to meet him at an Italian restaurant in Cobble Hill. It was the most fun I ever had. We made out in front of my apartment later on.
He couldn't have been more different from any guy I had ever met. That's why I liked him so much. He is much less concerned with being cool than I am, and that's exactly what I needed.
I said "I love you" as I was falling asleep next to him a month into dating. He made fun of me, so I pretended I had been sleep talking. A few months later on my birthday he told me he really loved me.
Timing didn't really come up until almost three years in when we were in bed talking about our future and where we would live. We said that we'd get married within the next two years, no rush. A couple months later we took a trip to San Francisco over the holidays, and stayed at a friend's place while they were away. On December 29th, we were in bed talking about our New Year's resolutions for 2016. I went to the bathroom and when I came back he was sitting cross legged on the bed looking kind of serious. I sat down in front of him and he said, "How about in 2016 we get married." He pulled out a ring from behind his back and I cried.
We knew immediately that we wanted to have a wedding in Greece, which is where Yiannis is from. We decided to do it in Pelion, which is a mountain four hours north of Athens with incredible beaches, where his family has a house, so everyone coming could make it a vacation. We did our legal wedding at City Hall in NYC a month before, then went to a Greek restaurant in Chinatown afterwards.
We walked down the aisle together while three Greek musicians played a traditional wedding song joined by fifteen of Yiannis' friends. My sister was my best woman — she wore these insane black Yoji Yamomoto drapey suspender pants with a Club Monaco top and amazing Prada shoes. My brother was my best man and rocked white pants and a blue linen jacket. Yiannis' best man wore a vest designed by their friend and his sister wore a dress designed by her too.
The Taverna served traditional Greek food, family style. We feasted on grilled octopus, grape leaves, feta, fish, spinach pie, grilled eggplant, lamb, and lemon potatoes. We drank Tsiporo, the local liquor, and wine. Yiannis' dad made the Taramasalata for the entire wedding, because it's his specialty and their family won't eat it from anywhere else.
There was a lot of super fun traditional Greek dancing, which got rowdy pretty fast. At one point I found myself doing a dance around my husband who was kneeling and clapping for me from the ground while people threw rice and dried flowers at us. I later found out that this is a typical Greek fertility dance.
We went to a nearby island in Greece to continue eating fried seafood on the beach and slept a lot. I wouldn’t change a thing, unless I could have made it all happen in slow motion so it didn't end so soon.
Pics by Matt Dine