My mom had to go to the Winterset courthouse today to get something for her taxes. Our house is exactly two blocks from the courthouse; we’re as close as you can get to the town square without actually being on it. I was writing at the kitchen table with a cup of coffee when Mom came back.
“I got my documents,” Mom said, taking off her winter coat. “I was in the hall on the third floor and this guy — real tattooed, rough-looking guy — was lost. I asked, ‘Can I help you find something?’ and he said, ‘Yeah, I’m lookin’ for where you get married and where the bathrooms are at.'”
I coughed on my coffee. “He was getting married? Seriously? At the courthouse just now?”
“There was a whole wedding party,” Mom said. “The girl was very pregnant, dressed in this short, short white dress. The guys were all tough guys, tattoos. I think the mother of one of the couple was there. It was very interesting.” I shook my head. That was so awesome. A shotgun wedding at my very own courthouse. I was sorry I hadn’t seen it myself. I began to ask Mom every question I could think of because it would be a great story for this blog.
“Well, why don’t you just run over there right now? They’re probably still there; I only left two minutes ago.”
Incredibly, I was ready to run at that exact moment: my sweats and sneakers were still on from my morning workout. I scrambled out of my chair and took off, blazing down the alley, the courthouse dead in front of me. It’s a total beeline over there. I pushed through the heavy oak doors and zoomed up the two flights of stone stairs to the third floor. I looked this way and that, following hallways, peeking in doors. Come on, come on.
The girl working at the desk in the last office I peeked into turned out to be Tiffany, a girl from my high school. We recognized each other at once; it was a happy, if rushed reunion. I told her, breathlessly — I looked like a post-workout maniac — that my mom said there was a wedding and did she know where they do that stuff, the weddings at the courthouse? Tiffany did (she’s the office manager) and said it would probably be the courtroom. I followed her down the stairs and we were quickly right at the door to the courtroom. There was the wedding party, just as my mother had described them.
Tomorrow, the rest of the story, lovingly told, will include:
– how I was invited to stay for the ceremony and did
– a more detailed description of the bride and the groom
– musings on love (duh)
– how I cried like a dweeb (duh)
Until then, enjoy the canapes.