Wendy and Mark were the first British couple we had the pleasure of photographing for a wedding, and I nearly forgot just how much fun hanging out with a group of Brits can be. Their sense of humour is completely different than anything we may be used to out West (in North America), and I say this in the best way possible. We had an amazing time not only with the couple, but with their entire entourage. Considering the amount of laughs and giggles that were shared, it’s a bit wild to think that there was only the eight of them in attendance (and that’s even including the bride and groom!) The crew was a boisterous bunch and I should have expected nothing less. This wedding happened to be a second marriage for both Wendy, and for Mark, having met each other many years ago while their offspring spent time together. They would meet up during holidays and other annual celebrations, each with their respective partners at the time. Fast forward several years, to dissolved first marriages, some distance and the wonderfully handy online tool we all love known as Facebook, and before you knew it, conversations were had over drinks with the realization that they did, in fact, still have plenty in common. The added advantage and catch, this time, was that they each were now single. Honing in on the fast that they instantly clicked, sharing a fabulously wicked sense of humour, these two lovebirds hit it off and started dating, obviously leading them to this moment here at Riu Palace Riviera Maya.
Wendy and Mark had a short and brief ceremony, exchanging vows and officially declaring each other husband and wife, including their thumbprints on certificates of marriage. The sun was hot and bright, bearing down in the late afternoon sky, but this did not prevent Wendy from maintaining eye contact with Mark throughout it all. The love between these two is strong, and hard to miss. And the adoration that their respective friends and family in attendance were showing them, confirmed just how meant for each other these two are. There were immense smiles from everyone the entire time. It’s no wonder Wendy described them as just two people who love to have fun, be with friends and like being silly. They share a love for their dogs, of which they have three (and were missing terribly during this vacation), and enjoy taking them for walks and enjoying their overall playfulness, as none of them are older than 4 years of age. Looking over at their friends seated in a cute, little line, with nods of approval and little outbursts of excitement.
When all was said and done, there was nothing but a giddiness as shirts could be unbuttoned (temperatures were hot and humid, in case that wasn’t already known), pants rolled up, and shoes kicked off. We spent time on the beach, we wandered the grounds a bit, and made sure to take advantage of the lavish interior decor at the front entrance of Riu Palace Riviera Maya. The bar staff at the resort was very accommodating, making drinks as requested while everyone snacked on pretzels and cookies and other such small bites to eat. We meandered over to the piano and although a general request is to not play it, of course Wendy and Joel opted to break the rules a wee bit, because why not really? We left the crew for a short period again, so we could focus on some memorable photos on just the two of them before being beckoned over to the reception dinner.
Although we had only been booked for a short day, with enough time to cover the ceremony and spend time photographing creatives immediately following both with their tight knit crew and as newlyweds, we were still invited to stay for the meal and reception. Obviously, with such a generous offer, we could not even fathom saying no. As it turns out, they had also invited another couple they met at the resort, to join the dinner celebrations as well. And, despite no longer being on the clock, we still felt compelled to whip out the cameras now and again, to catch some meaningful and touching moments in good company. There were still cards read aloud, karaoke-like singalongs and select songs performed solo by Wendy’s son, Joel. Tears were shed on several occasions, but so were laughs, and we were happy capturing these precious moments for Wendy and Mark. Thanks again for offering the centerpiece flowers too, we enjoyed having fresh flowers on display throughout the home for an entire week following your wedding.