Gila Svirsky: A Personal Website

Our Wedding

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Open the speakers! Sorry for the long download time, but make yourselves a cup of coffee and then you can read about the wedding just below where the slides will come in.  It's a 15-minute show!

Oops, I'm having trouble uploading this. Let's call it still "Under construction".

click here to play video

What: Marriage of Judy Kirshner and Gila Svirsky, after 12 years of living together...
Where: On the shores of the Mediterranean at Akhziv Beach in the north of Israel.
When: Friday, 31 July 2009

It was great! In the morning, some friends and family helped us set up and decorate. From noon, other guests started arriving, and enjoyed the swimming, boating, snorkel, and snuba (that's the scuba still attached to the boat you'll see). Daughter Denna Brand arranged all these beach events.

Toward evening - the ceremony. The "wedding party" walked down the stairs (cum aisle) in this order:
Huppa holders: Alexandra Teasdale, Yana Knopova, Sandy Kenin, and Mary Ellen Reed.
Sally Gottesman, who officiated;
Daughter Mieka Brand and her twin sons Omer and Eitan (our grandsons!);
Gila with younger daughter Denna Brand; and
Judy with brother & sis-in-law Steve and Anne Kirshner.

The ceremony took place under the huppa, which had iron-on photos of the many loved ones we wanted to have there, but who couldn't make it (some for distance, some who had passed on), so they all got to witness our wedding.
After our little dance circling each other 7 times (and many guests joined us for that), we heard the 7 brachot (blessings) from:
1) Paul and Diana Schwartz (Gila's brother & sis-in-law);
2) Mary Handel;
3) Ghiselaine Rosen;
4) Bob Fenton;
5) Yael Meyer;
6) Cousins Shlomo and Noga Keren; and
7) the Hevre (gang): Eli and Lellick Saguy, Itzik and Doron Galnoor, Bambi and Ofra Korach, Benny and Ariella Gidron, Galia Golan, and Gogo Rosenberg.

We read out loud the Ketuba (commitment) - that parchment on the stand - and everyone present signed it as witnesses. Then Sally had us make some blessings, we drank some wine, exchanged rings, and together stomped on 2 glasses to mark the "Jerusalem portion" of the ceremony, with our own nontraditional words (let us dwell together in Jerusalem, Jew and non-Jew, in compassion and in peace).

Then - the kiss!  Followed by - the fall!  A new tradition we started at this wedding...

And then, of course, the party, which was a gas, with great music, wonderful food - thanks to Egonne Roth and Yehudit Berndt - kids doing breakdance, toasts by adults, and a great time was had by all.

Followed by a brunch the next morning at our home in Nahariya overlooking the sea.

To those who wondered: No, the marriage is not official in Israel, but it is sealed in our hearts, and we have all the signatures of our witnesses, and this slideshow to prove it really happened. It seems like a beautiful dream...

"Seize the moment. Think of all those women on the 'Titanic' who waved off the dessert cart." - Erma Bombeck