“Johann and I met on OkCupid,” writes Anna. “Although we later discovered that we had friends in common – my roommate had actually gone to Johann’s birthday party – we never crossed paths. Our first date was at a local bar near MIT in Cambridge, where we were both living. Needless to say, we had a great time and wound up staying until they kicked us out at closing time.
“When we met, Johann was finishing his PhD and had already made plans to move to China for two years to teach biology and continue his research on breast cancer. A month later while we were visiting friends in San Francisco we officially decided that I would move to China with him. Five months later we got engaged. Johann proposed in the middle of Times Square during a weekend trip to New York City. Since then we’ve visited over 16 countries together.”
What is one piece of advice you’d give to friends who are planning a wedding on Martha’s Vineyard?
Make sure that your guests book their accommodations and travel arrangements well in advance! For people who aren’t familiar with traveling to the island in the summer it can be hard to communicate just how early you need to secure hotel arrangements and ferry reservations. We ended up trying to help guests who were scrambling at the last minute and were unable to find hotel or ferry reservations. More affordable hotel options were especially hard to find last-minute, so for couples with lots of young friends traveling, it’s important to communicate clearly and often and to check-in with your guests along the way to make sure they’re making arrangements in advance. We definitely learned that lesson the hard way!
What was your worst “Bridezilla” moment?
I really don’t think I had any “Bridezilla” moments. I even asked my husband to make sure that I asn’t just deluding myself! Both Johann and I really wanted our wedding to be relaxed, happy, and focused on having fun with the people we love most. We didn’t want anything elaborate, stuffy or complicated; just a beautiful and comfortable location where our family and friends could eat, dance and celebrate.
Is there anything you think you spent too much money or time on?
No regrets! We wanted our wedding to be fun and relaxed rather than formal and fussy, so we focused the budget on a great band, a beautiful location, good food and strong drinks! We decided not to do some of the more traditional wedding things that didn’t feel as important to us, like programs and favors. Watching our friends and family out on the dance floor, playing a game of corn hole, or just enjoying the beautiful Chilmark views, I think it worked! We wouldn’t change a thing!
What was your favorite part of the big day?
(I asked Johann what his favorite part of our wedding day was and he said “you”. We were really just incredibly happy to be married to each other! Besides that rather obvious answer…) I think our favorite part of our wedding day was having so many family and friends in one place. Living on the other side of the world, that was the most incredible thing. Johann’s family traveled all the way from Chile, and so many others traveled from near and far, by plane, train, automobile, bus, and boat to our little island to be with us. We are so grateful!
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