If it isn’t that obvious yet, I’m saying it now: I have a thing for really old things. So you can just imagine how excited I got when Lyn (more popularly known as Miss Seafarer-to-be-wed in w@w) e-mailed me photos of her “something old.” Wait, correction — it should be LOTS of things old. With the whole range of heirlooms she used on her wedding at the Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Parish last July 31, I think this bride may have just set a record for ancient wedding things.
First, there are the leaf earrings, which are at least 85 years old. According to Lyn, they belonged to her paternal grandmother Rosario Alvarez, who got them as a gift from her husband, Lyn’s Lolo Saturnino.
The diamond earrings were later passed on to Lyn’s mom Noria (her Lola Rosario’s first daughter-in-law), and then to Lyn’s sister Noreen, who used the earrings when she got married in the States 12 years ago, and now to Lyn, who finally tied the knot with her seafarer sweetheart Rey after 11 years of being together. Talk about a very long engagement! I don’t know where this bride got the patience and fortitude for it, but all’s well that ends well. Right Lyn? 8 )
On to older things: the wedding rings. Yep, those 14K gold bands had belonged to someone else, too — Lyn’s Mama Bunggay, a spinster grandaunt from her father’s side, who received the rings from her parents (Lyn’s great grandparents). Estimated age? A century. Beat that.
The couple had the rings re-minted and resized. A gold pendant from the groom was melded with the rings to make them big enough for the couple’s fingers.
Old things, of course, come in old packages. Like this jewelry box which Lyn’s mom bought in Baguio during a conference almost 30 years ago. During the wedding, the box was used as a treasure chest for the rings and cord, in lieu of the usual pillow coin holders. I’m drooling over this wooden chest!
The couple’s cord was made up of 88 pieces of 5-centavo coins. It was created for Lyn’s maternal grandparents Dionisio and Rosario Amante’s wedding anniversary in 1984. You do the math.
This item was long forgotten. Years after their death, we found it in Lola’s closet… Immediately, I wanted it to be our cord also. When my cousin got married last November 2008, I offered her the cord. Now that it’s our time, she and her husband are our cord sponsors. We are hoping that this cord will be passed on from generation to generation of the Amante clan.
Lyn and Rey’s arrhae had 13 coins, with one dating as far back as 1907. They were from the coin collection of Lyn’s parents, kept in — what else — a good, ol’ coin bank. Lucky Lyn.
I’m always amazed by people who manage to preserve things and pass them on to the next generation. It’s just so… valuable, the memories that go into those elements. Hats off to the families of this couple for keeping these precious things.
Now I’m thinking: Should I give my engagement ring to someone as a sort of heirloom when I’m old and wrinkled? Hmm… Next topic (I’m still too attached to it. Let me get married first. 8 )