I escorted the bride and her father from the bridal suite to the elevator. Once the doors reopened we made our way to the hotel lobby where the florist pinned the boutonniere on the father. I radioed over to Tammy, who is at the ceremony site, “Package ready for delivery”. Radio static followed by, “Deliver the package.” I pushed open the lobby’s double doors as the father and bride took their first steps into the sun light, faces glowing with blissful exuberance. We descended the steps and everyone on the side walk looked up with congratulatory words. I stepped into the street to direct traffic, stop Mr. Sedan I have precision cargo. We reached the park’s green grass where the ceremony and guests were yards away. The bride smiled, overwhelmed with joy and I fixed the train of her lace gown. The congregation stood in welcome as she made their way to her smiling husband to be.
Did you picture it? Did you see the whole thing playing in your head? Flawless execution meeting a joyous celebration. Right? Right.
Pause everything and let’s rewind.
Surprisingly enough, I’ve noticed countless similarities in being a Tampa Florida wedding planner and being a television producer: lots of meetings, loads of planning, a ton of logistics, and never ending thinking outside, inside, around, over, and through the box. But the most noticeable similarity are the time bombs, overlooked factors waiting to be set off. Time bombs are the one thing that wasn’t accounted for, that didn’t cross your mind because it was so minute, so trifle, so many other synonyms for insignificant that it blows up in your face to spite you. But in all honesty, on the job that’s what I live. I live for the day’s end when you look back and think, “I can’t believe x, y, & z happened, but we pulled through and nobody noticed.”
Every job has Time Bombs where it feels like each day is 30% legit work and 80% making it look good—don’t pay attention to the math just follow along with my point. And once you get over the explosion, and handle the aftershock, don’t you feel accomplished? Like DONE, what’s next!
WHERE: Birchwood Hotel, downtown St. Pete
TIME BOMB: the elevator
So this past Saturday, gorgeous location, gorgeous day, and brand spankin’ new walkie talkie radios to play with. The ceremony was set across the street from the hotel in the public park.
It all started when we unloaded the car and were getting everything onto the service elevator to take to the banquet room. The service elevator was terribly slow, then, it, stopped, on, every, floor, even though, only, the, fourth, floor, was pushed.
I go outside for arch decorating duty, which if I can toot honk slap my own horn here, take a moment to gander at the marvels of that arch décor! And the highest of 5’s to Bill for building and putting it all together. We made a great team. While pinning some of the Fabric I actually cut my hand and had to one hand the décor process.
So Tammy comes to talk to me about the logistics of getting people to the ceremony, then to the reception, because as we found out the guest elevators were also running slow, and we had over 100 wedding guests . Once the ceremony actually started I lost count how many times I had to run past the herd of hotel guests standing at the elevators, run through the hotel to the back, hop up four flights of stairs, head across the banquet room to greet guests getting off the elevator and catch my breath before looking like I just finished a track meet.
But that’s just in the job, those Time Bombs, and after losing 5 pounds after all the running, we had a successful day. A great day. And the best part, nobody noticed. Flawless execution meeting a joyous celebration.
To enjoy the whole story and see more photos of this St, Petersburg, Florida Garden Wedding at the Birchwood click on the link below: