Carolin + Fred // Konigswinter, Germany Wedding
Carolin and Fred. Wow, is this a story to tell or what! First off, Carolin is "My German." Yes, that's what I refer to her as. She lived with my family for a year and was my German exchange student when I was a senior at Poudre High School. We got in all sorts of trouble together, fought like sisters and had way too much fun. I never had a sister (two younger terror brothers, woohoo), so to have Carolin in my life is such a blessing :). We get to see her about 2 years for a couple weeks, so it feels like time doesn't pass for too long before we spend time with her.
I first met Fred on my first trip to Germany in 2008. Carolin and Fred were not dating, but we rubbed shoulders with him at a bar that we accidentally got kicked out of. It was a huge misunderstanding. I didn't speak German, they had these drink tickets that you punch and so Carolin put mine on her punch card (because I am "Her American"), and then they thought I was trying to cheat the system when we were leaving. The German police came and kept talking to me in German. I repeatedly said, "I have no clue what you are saying because I don't speak German." Long story short, I ate a really good gyro at 3:00 am from a food cart nearby and the police believed my story, which was true. To this day, I still have no clue what they asked me and am still utterly confused. I also left a jacket there that I never got back! Makes for a great story though, and a memorable one because I met Fred that night!
Carolin and Fred starting dating awhile after that and I actually had some clue about who he was which was pretty awesome since the chances of meeting him in the near future would have been slim because we were not planning on any Europe trips. Years go by, these guys date, Carolin visits and we Skype Fred...Yadadada. Finally, I hear that they are engaged and now we have a GREAT excuse to go to Germany! And perfect for them and perfect for me, I am a destination wedding photographer who happens to love traveling. My poor husband could not make the trip because he is a slave to corporate world ;), but my parents got to be my dates as well as my one-year old daughter, Eleanor. We decided to make a big trip out of it, and drive all the way up from Rome, Italy through Switzerland to Germany. I will talk about that at another time.
The wedding was SOOO MUCH FUN! It was almost a 24 hour wedding day. These Germans really know how to party, and stay up way later than we do as Americans. The ceremony at the courthouse was at about 11:00 am, and was followed by a cocktail hour and then an afternoon river cruise on the Rhine River. It was a beautiful day. Pretty warm but not too hot! I was wondering how these Germans were able to stay up all day and all night while drinking alcohol, and the most amazing tip was shared with me. They actually mix white wine and sparkling water so they stay hydrated and don't conk out. I was pretty impressed! After the river cruise we headed on a small adventure to take their photos. We walked along the Rhine River, which is located in Königswinter, near Bonn. It also happens to be Carolin's parent's backyard. We then headed about two blocks away to their second cocktail hour at a "Biergarten." From there, we went downstairs to the wine cellar, ate dinner and partied until 5:00 am. It was the most amazing day and so much fun. The Germans also know how to dance, sing soccer songs and give amazing speeches (we had an english translator).
The most amazing thing about this wedding day and the German culture in general is that they are not rushed. We spent so much quality time with Carolin, her family and the wedding guests. There wasn't work to be distracted by, time cutoffs to make....we just hung out (and photographed things of course). I wish the American culture would take some ideas from them. They also get multiple weeks of "holiday" throughout the year. I wouldn't mind that either :). Anyway, I know this was way too long but I just had so many wonderful things to share. I truly had a blast and can't wait to photograph more destination weddings down the road.
Ich Liebe Dich, Carolin & Fred
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