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Wedding: Ian and Leah

October 6th, 2008

Leah is an old friend, Ian a new one. I had the pleasure of squeezing in some rock climbing in Maple Canyon, UT, a couple months ago when our busy schedules matched up. On August 30, I went to their wedding on a farm out by Redmond, Washington, near where I grew up.

Being a photographer, I couldn’t help but make a few pictures. Here, to accompany them, are the words of the Ian’s best man:

“Ian and I had come to this beach in search of waves to surf. Or, so I thought. But when we ran into Leah at the water’s edge, it was immediately apparent higher forces were at work: for the first time Ian and Leah saw each other head to toe in skin-tight neoprene. And it was obvious that they liked what they saw.

“At the time Ian was a lonely, hard working landscape architect in search of love and meaning. And Leah was a grieving resident soldiering on in the face of incalculable loss.

“In the months to come, Ian would learn a few things about Leah. That she was one of the five humans on earth that could outrun him on a snowboard. That she could leave him gasping in her dust at the base of a climbing route. That she was a cook of the likes that which he had never seen. On his 30th birthday, for instance, she cooked paella for 30 people in 30 minutes, in a parking lot in Sekiu. With no help. He would learn, in his own words, that she was a formidable woman.

“During those few months Leah would learn a few things about Ian. That he was a master gardener. That he loved his work as few others do. That he could do the worm like a champ. That nothing meant more to him than his family, and that the quickest route to his heart was through his stomach.

“Since that neoprene-clad meeting on the beach, Ian and Leah’s relationship has become more than sports, more than cooking, more than gardening even. It has become love. A deep, grounded love. It has become a union of two people that operate in slightly different tempos. Ian at a tranquilo, Leah at a presto.

“Yet these different tempos only seem to strengthen their bond. To help them provide solace, respite and love for each other in the face of the distractions of modern life.

“So, Leah and Ian, if I can just ask you to turn around and look at the crowd here; you remember when you said you’d just have a small ceremony? You have way too many family and friends for that.

“They’re all here to celebrate the love that you have given to each other, and the love that you’ll continue to give. So just take a moment to soak it up.

“Ok, that’s enough soaking.”

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