WHILE WALKING TOWARD THE HISTORIC CHURCH, I first saw her. The woman dressed in black. With a camera. Although I wondered at her formal attire, I didn’t consider that she might be someone other than a photographer interested in the Village of Yesteryear.
But soon enough, when I saw a bride and her attendants rounding the back of the 1856 District No. 14 schoolhouse, the photographer’s purpose became clear.
By that time, I’d reached St. Wenceslaus Church of Moravia, a church built in 1891 and moved here, to the grounds of the Steele County Historical Society in Owatonna, in 1962.
I pondered for a moment whether a wedding was planned here, but saw nothing to indicate that. So I took a few photos of the aged church, which was locked, just like all the other buildings in this historic village on this late Saturday afternoon. And while I did that, I kept my eye on the nearby photo session.
For one, I didn’t want to stray into the path of the professional photographer. I’ve been in her shoes and understand the frustration of dealing with wedding guests who get in the way and want to take photos. That presents challenges in time and management and more.
But, as I neared the group of women while en route to the parking lot, I couldn’t stop myself from asking, “Is it okay if I take your picture? I’m a blogger.” The bride was quick to approve and the photographer invited me to stand next to her. I declined. “I don’t have my mask,” I explained. She didn’t have her face mask either.
That is the reality of living during a global pandemic. As excited as I was to happen upon this most common of summer scenes—an outdoors bridal photo session—I still remembered COVID-19. Minutes earlier I’d congratulated the bride on her wedding day, specifically commenting on the challenges of marrying in a pandemic.
But, as I framed a few photos, my thoughts shifted back to the moment, to the celebration, to the joy. Here were four beautiful young women, stunning in their sparkly dresses, arms wrapped around one another, luscious bouquets of peonies clutched in their hands, posing for portraits against an historic backdrop.
In that moment I witnessed life. Ordinary and celebratory. Life full and joyous. Life as lovely as a June bride.
© Copyright 2020 Audrey Kletscher Helbling
So needed this post today to remind me of the joys – life is so precious right now and of course each and every day 🙂 This pandemic has taught me how to better handle my emotions as well as find a good balance. Today I am putting that balance to work in working remotely and taking a quick break from the hustle and bustle of the office. Take Care, Be Safe and Happy Weekend – Enjoy!!!
Enjoy your working from home day. I’m glad I brought you some joy this morning.
An interesting place to have photos taken. Looks like the bridal gown is gorgeous! And I love the color of the bridesmaid’s dresses. What a joyful sight.
It’s a great place for photos. And I agree with you on the dresses and the joy.
Such a beautiful and joyous occasion. Also, such lovely pictures. Life goes on, and we hope and pray for a safe and happy marriage for the new bride and her husband.
Amen to that, Norma. Good to hear from you.