This is one wedding that’s truly worth recalling to your kids and grandkids and great grandkids. I don’t think I’ve met any couple that’s this determined to become one on the date they set to exchange vows.
Arnel Perez and Jeselyn Morales got married on Sept. 26, 2009, just as Typhoon Ondoy — the worst to hit Metro Manila in 40 years — was angrily lashing at the capital, submerging 80 percent of the metropolis in floodwater.
Any other day, it would have been an ordinary wedding.
But thanks to the weather, it was anything but ordinary.
Jesselyn, all dolled up by HMUA Victoria Gonzalez, left the Joya Condotel in Rockwell just as the staff cleared the lobby of floodwater that had entered the building.
The flooded streets of Makati, however, were something that nobody could clear for the couple. The groom made it to their church, the National Shrine of the Sacred Heart, on a pedicab, standing on the seat so that he could be above the water. The bride relates:
Muntik na bumaligtad yung sinasakyan nila… Buti nalang dami tumulong sa kanila itinulak yung pedicab tapos sigaw daw ng isang lalaki dun, “Tulungan natin ito, IKAKASAL ITO!!!”
Meanwhile, Jesselyn, who was with her parents and a coordinator from Bride’s Diary in the bridal car, ended up at the Makati Fire Station, looking for another ride and almost ready to take a pedicab:
Nagpalit na ako ng damit, pinahiram na sa akin ng coordinator ko yung pambahay niya para mag-pedicab din kami. Nakapambahay na ako, ready na talaga akong sumulong sa baha.
But the heavens sent an angel, a DJ from RX 93 whose name the bride forgot in the madness of the scenario. The DJ was asking for directions at the Fire Station so he could pick up his girlfriend somewhere near the church. He took in the bride and her delegation and delivered them safely on a 4×4 pick-up.
Here’s the bride in her pambahay with her (cute) unnamed rescuer. She changed into her gown inside the church.
And finally, finally, the wedding — two hours delayed — started with only the couple, their parents and a pair of sponsors. Their photographers from Parkershot (who took all these photos) were there, along with the wedding coordinators and a vocalist from the Manila Philharmonic Orchestra (I’m making it a point to name their suppliers so you guys know the REALLY reliable ones. If these people can brave Ondoy, they can brave anything for your wedding).
Pagkanta ng wedding march ko natuluyan yung pag-iyak ko kasi pinipigilan ko lang bago mgsimula… Hindi ko na talaga napigilan. Buti na lang si groom ang laki ng smile hanggang tenga.
Check out the ultra gloomy sights from the window of the The Loft@Manansala in Rockwell (past the cake!), where Arnel and Jeselyn had their reception.
Ever in good spirits, the couple wowed their guests with their first dance — to Korean pop group Wonder Girls’ Nobody.
Naloka sila sa dance number namin, akala nila traditional lang pero NOBODY talaga…. NOBODY can stop us talaga.
This is one of my favorite wedding stories ever. I wish Arnel and Jeselyn a marriage less stressful –but just as exciting — as their wedding day. For more anecdotes and pictures, head over here.