Iona & Nigel’s Humanist Wedding at Harburn House

I’ve got a classic Suzuki 1100 ES sitting idle in my garage as I type this, but not so long ago I was a keen motorcyclist, and as it says on my profile on the HSS site, I’ve always wanted to conduct a biker wedding. I suppose I had the idea that it would involve everyone arriving on bikes in full leathers, and it being something of a wild, high octane event, but as usual the reality was a little different.

Nigel and Iona met through Saddletramps an outfit that friends of mine also rode with, so I felt an affinity with them both from the start. But it was when they sent me their homework that I got really interested. It was amazing. Searingly honest, (their dislike for one another  was mutual for quite a while at first), emotionally open, funny and moving, there were times I thought “Woooah! Too much information”, but I knew that if they chose to use any of it in the ceremony, it would be one to remember. 

And it was. But for quite the opposite reason.

Iona and Nigel hardly used any of the material they’d shared in their homework at all. Instead, they wrote something entirely new, that was just as honest, open, funny and moving, but in a very different way.

One of the quotations they chose was from Lao Tzu, the father of Taoist philosophy. 
‘Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.’ Nigel and Iona have found this to be true.

I learned a lot from Nigel and Iona’s wedding, not least that the homework isn’t just for the ceremony. It’s its own reward; you can use it, or not use it, but you won’t regret doing it.

It was a great wedding in so many ways. Sadly I left just as the wilder part of the evening was getting under way, but it looked as though it was going to be a LOT of fun.

Iona sent me a lovely note, which said, We wanted to thank you for conducting such a wonderful ceremony and making everyone at ease. We so wish we’d heard you telling them all they would have to strip off naked, ahhh to have been a fly on the wall with a video camera at that point! 

We had such a wonderful day and really feel that the pre-picnic gathering set the scene for the relaxed day, and that the ceremony really portrayed Nigel and I and how we wanted the day and our lives to be. Thank you again for everything: for being with us and conducting our ceremony, and very very importantly for giving us our homework, )which was and is invaluable and we will value it for years and years to come), and for just being you and being part of our wedding.”

My thanks to Iona and Nigel and all their family and friends for making me so welcome, and to their photographer Nick Kirk for allowing me to use so many of his great shots.
  1. Mckie Clan left a comment on November 7, 2010 at 8:18 am

    Thanx this is a great summary of the ceremony and meeting you. Thank you and we wish you well. Iona & Nigel xx

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