It’s been over a month since my last post. What could possibly explain such an inexcusable lack of updates? Well, I got married and spent half a month traveling around the Turkish countryside. If you’ve ever gotten married (and if you haven’t, I highly recommend it) I’m sure you will forgive my inattention to this site, and while there are countless game and writing related topics I’m itching to talk about with you, today I’d simply like to share some of the amazing experiences my wife and I have had over the past month.

The Build-Up

From the beginning, my wife, Dassance, and I knew we wanted a non-traditional wedding. We wanted a celebration, not a ceremony. We also knew that we would be preparing, planning and executing the entire thing ourselves — no room for a wedding planner or professional catering in our budget or our vision. Shortly after the proposal, we had it all figured out. Six months before the wedding we were ready. Food? Taco truck. Decorations? Decided. Cake? Mom’s on it. Music? Kick ass iPod playlists. Drinks? Homebrew and mojitos. There wasn’t a question about our wedding that we couldn’t answer.

We spent the months leading up to the wedding becoming less and less prepared. If you haven’t experienced it, it is difficult to explain, but the time leading up to the wedding, all the way up to the second you begin to walk down the aisle, is an epic crescendo of entropy. Long before the wedding, when the event is still abstract and unreal, it seems so easy. Saying “we will have thousands of origami butterflies and Japanese paper lanterns” solves the problem of decoration. But it doesn’t make the butterflies or hang the lanterns. As the day, hour and even minute of the wedding approaches, the sheer amount of work that needs doing in order to realize your vision comes into increasingly sharp focus, to the point that you find yourself running in circles shouting for decorative thumbtacks.

Mercifully, the moment of the wedding arrives and the frenzied preparation comes to a silent halt as people begin to walk down the aisle. What’s done is done and what couldn’t be finished is left undone and life goes on. Those decorative thumbtacks that seemed so important ten minutes ago evaporate when you see the love of your life, radiant, coming down the aisle to join you for the rest of your life.

The Big Day

Our wedding was the most fun I’ve ever had. After the short eight minute ceremony, my new wife and I emerged onto the most amazing scene of merriment. There was juggling, hula-hooping, piñatas, confetti and of course copious amounts of alcohol. Most importantly, there were 120 close friends and family from across the country, all gathered to wish my wife and me a joyous life.

The celebration after the ceremony is all a bit of a blur. The food was great, the company unmatched, and the wine flowed like a river (maybe explaining the blur…). Despite efforts to speak with everyone and thank them for coming, it quickly became apparent that it was a losing battle and before we knew it, dusk had settled on the reception and it was time to dance.

The great irony of weddings is that they are rituals to bring two people together, but those two people inevitably spend the entire night apart. Dassance and I spent very little time together after the ceremony, but the dancing was a welcome chance for us to escape the chains of conversations and relax in each other’s arms for a few short minutes before being whisked away into another game of “Ninjas” or a conversation with a long-lost friend. But it was all okay because the next day you get to wake up with your wife, while that long-lost friend is back on an airplane and who knows when you will get to see him again. The next day you realize that it’s not just a celebration for the bride and groom, but for everyone who came because they love you and want to share in your new life.

Together At Last

We had a quick turn-around between wedding and honeymoon. Our team of generous helpers got the wedding site all cleaned up, leaving us the opportunity to relax and get ready for Turkey. We decided on Turkey because we wanted to go somewhere neither of us had been before, that had amazing history, as well as beaches for the obligatory post-wedding relaxation. Dassance and I are both annoyingly well-traveled and we worked our way through all of Western Europe and much of the Americas before we found a place that fit our criteria.

Turkey had been on my radar since my brother came back from a tour of Europe with stories of amazing food and better Greek ruins than Greece. I’m a sucker for ruins. Show me a tumbled down pile of marble and I become invigorated, gaining an almost superhuman ability to trek through blazing sun as the wrecked city comes to life in my mind. I hear the bustle of citizens as I walk down two thousand-year old roads, feel the roar of crowd wash over me as I sit in the seats of an ancient amphitheater.  Sadly, ruins seem to have the opposite effect on my new wife. More like kryptonite to her Superman,  Dassance trudged on, amazed and awed by what we were witnessing, but drained by the experience, and as the days of ruin-watching wore on, she became weaker and weaker.

It was time for a break, and we found it on Bozcaada, a tiny island that has been producing wine for Dionysus worship for the last four thousand years. And it had beaches. Beautiful, clean Aegean beaches. A day and a half on Bozcaada and Dassance was ready for Troy. Not the movie, Troy – that put us both to sleep… on three consecutive nights. No, after relaxing on the beach we made our way to the real Troy. Not much to look at anymore, but the weight of history that is packed into that tiny archeological site is stunning. We had experienced ruins far grander, but Troy felt both familiar and momentous. Visiting the ancient city that spawned both the city of Rome (according to legend) and some of the greatest tales ever told fulfilled a lifelong dream.

But it was by far not the only dream of mine to be fulfilled of late. I have married the love of my life, celebrated in grand fashion with a party that far exceeded our expectations, and added another amazing country to the list! So forgive me for not posting sooner. It’s been a busy month.