Weddings as Inspiration
Posted by Nancy J. Cohen on August 1, 2012
Congratulations to LORALEE LILLIBRIDGE who won the pair of handcuffs in the drawing from my previous blog. Loralee, please contact me with your snail mail address.
We recently attended a family wedding, and it reminded me why I used a wedding as my setting in Shear Murder, book ten in the Bad Hair Day mystery series. The sheer sentimentality, the joy of the married couple, the suspension of family conflict for one evening, lend themselves to an outburst of passion that can have good or bad results. In my story, it ends in the matron of honor’s death, her body found by my hairdresser sleuth under the cake table.
This particular wedding took place at a magnificent site in Mitchellville, Maryland: the Newton White Mansion. Surrounded by beautiful acreage, this historic house is the perfect setting for a nuptial ceremony.
The processional began to the music of violinists. A more beautiful bride couldn’t be found. A traditional Jewish wedding followed, with all of the customs described in my earlier blog. The wedding program explained each ritual in detail. At the breaking of the glass, cheers erupted.
After the bridal party exited and slipped away to take photos, we entered a separate smaller room for cocktails and appetizers.
Dinner and dancing followed with live, pulse-pounding music. Young people might like it that loud, but we couldn’t be heard over the noise. I prefer quieter, romantic dance music for a wedding or at least rock decibels that don’t beat through your head. Anyway, the dinner was delicious. Stuffed lobster tail and filet mignon followed a mixed greens salad. I was most impressed by the magnificent flower arrangements. The centerpieces were exquisite. Again my writer’s brain erupted with ideas. I remembered an unpublished story of mine wherein floral wiring was used as a method of murder. I can’t help it; we writers are unable to turn off our storytelling mind. And I’d also had the foresight to bring business cards in my beaded clutch purse.
Those treats that look like lollipops are cake pops, all the rage in the dessert stores these days. I thought they were the dessert and ate two. Chocolate covered strawberries accompanied them. Then wedding cake got passed around. Oy! I was too full to eat another bite.
We left the mansion feeling happy, sated, and tired. We spent the rest of our time in Maryland eating meals with family, touring downtown D.C., and strolling around Bethesda. I look forward to the next wedding that brings us north again. So much time, money, and planning goes into this event, and it goes by so fast! But such is life, and these events live on in my stories and in my heart.