A Countryside Wedding

You're invited to a wedding. A charter bus carries you from the beachfront of San Sebastián and drops you off in...Bidania. A tiny village in the Gipuzkoan countryside. The sun is shining, it's a lovely 75 degrees, and you walk into the town's church to find an enormous, beautiful gold plated altar. The building is full of friends, as well as a few stragglers from the town who seem to have come to take the Eucharist.

Doesn't get any more beautiful....

The happy couple, the perfect day, all with the backdrop of paradise.

A walk up a hill, past farmhouses, gardens, and chickens, and you arrive at an old villa-turned-hotel. Each guest is seated according to a chart made of wood, with each table taking the name of a nearby village. Your own wooden spoon carries an engraving of your name.

But before dinner, there's champagne, endlessly refilled into your glass, and plates of designer pintxos. Each of which I ate at least two, while talking Basque politics and other pleasantries.

The groom gives a homerun of a speech, after feigning nervousness.

The dinner is also a homerun...seared scallops with strips of iberian fat over potato puree.

Lamb. And roasted peaches with butter crumbs and sweet cheesy cream.

A sweet ending (followed, of course, by gintonics and dancing the night away in the open country air). A perfect day. And a new couple whom I wish only the best! Here's to you, Jon + Nicole!