My friend Jess got married last night.  The build up has started in October when Jess and Josh got engaged. The countdown to the greatest party of the year for us friends.

I put the invitation on my fridge.  I alerted my nanny.  My parents came to sleep over so that my husband and I could sleep in the next morning.  The wedding started at 5pm.  Everyone was ready for the celebration.

Somewhere around the 12 am, I started to feel tired.  I saw some people were slowly disappearing. When I was getting married, I heard that you not supposed to say goodbye to the bride and groom when you are leaving their wedding, because to them it will feel like the party is over and they don’t want it to be over.

When half the people left, I turned to my husband and said.  “It is just starting.”

The typical American wedding is five hours long.  Long enough for a cocktail party, ceremony, some toasts, drinks, food, light dancing and desert.  That is what I call a boring wedding.   A part of me would rather tuck myself into bed and get an early start on my day.  But the other part was saying, some things just happen once.  To have fun at a wedding in Jewish tradition is a mitzvah, a good deed.  You are supposed to entertain the couple.  During the wedding, the couple takes on the role of a king and a queen.  Everyone is there for the purpose of their fun and joy.

I love this idea.  Ever since I learned this concept, I adopted it.  I remember at my own wedding.  I was thankful to those friends who stayed up for the after party.  It was just few of us dancing in the back tent to a little stereo.  In my mind, that is still my favorite part of the night.  That is when it started for me.  We used the play list I made on my iPod.  We went skinny dipping and we did not go to sleep until 4 am.  It was not the planned party, it was something that erupted out of the joy of those who wanted to celebrate.  I don’t know what the food tasted like at my wedding but I remember the feel of that pool. I remember all the people who stayed up with us that night and jumped up and down in a sweaty circle throbbing with the moment.

Last night was the same.  The ones who saw the importance of the job we had, stayed.  To party hard not just for ourselves but for the queen and the king.  They worry about the flowers and the minutia but the only thing that the bride and groom want, is the best party… ever.

For us, the wedding lasted 10 and a half hours.  I could not walk anymore.  We danced wildly most of that time.

Around 1am, Jess said, “I feel like it is just starting.”


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