Wedding season is in full swing this year. I found this passage from the book To the Wedding by John Berger a while ago and have found myself revisiting it again and again as I celebrate the marriages of my closest friends. I think it’s written beautifully and describes the kind of romantic and transcendent atmosphere that the best parties are made of.
"Everyone at the table in the orchard sits down to eat. With the meat they will drink dark wine. The guests start to touch each other more often, jokes pass quicker. When somebody forgets, somebody remembers for him or her. They hold hands when they laugh. Some take off things they were wearing before - a tie, a scarf, a pair of sandals which have become too tight. The cutlets on the board demand to be picked up and stripped clean with teeth. Everybody shares.
The wedding guests are becoming a single animal who has been fed well. A creature half mythical [...] Probably as old as man's discovery of fire, this creature never lives more than a day or two and is only reborn when there is something more to celebrate. Which is why feasts are rare. For those who become the creature, it is important to find a name to which it answers whilst alive, for only then can they recall, in their memory afterwards, how for a while, they lost themselves in its happiness."