“Lina. From the moment I first saw you, I knew you were the one I wanted to share my life with. Your beauty, soft hardheartedness, and creative mind inspire me to be the best man I can be. I promise to love you forever with respect for you, honoring you, and being faithful to you, the remaining days of my life. This is my solemn vow to you,” David swore to his new bride.
“I Lina. Affirm my love to you David, as I invite you to share my life. You are the most giving, intelligent, and courageous man I have ever known, and I promise always to respect you and love you until the end of time. With kindness and trust, I will walk by your side to create a wonderful life together. I take you David to be my husband, to have and to hold, from this day forward, for better or for worse, for richer or for poorer, in sickness and in health until death do us part,” Lina replied almost giddy with joy to her groom.
“With the power invested in me by our almighty Lord God and The German Reich, I now pronounce you man and wife,” the minister told the newlyweds. “You may now kiss the bride.”
David leaned down and gave Lina a long, soft, and passionate kiss. David knew this kiss was to be remembered for a lifetime, so he made it as loving and as romantic as he could possibly make it for Lina. David being Jewish, and Lina being a Protestant created a bit of a dilemma. Were they to be married in a Jewish wedding, or a Protestant wedding? Their decision was to have a Protestant wedding first, followed by a Jewish wedding the next weekend to appease both families.
At German weddings, it’s quite common to play games and one of them for brides and grooms is Baumstamm sägen – (sawing a tree trunk). After the ceremony, the couple face their first real challenge together, sawing a log of wood in half. With the groom on one side and the bride on the other side of the saw, the couple work together to saw the log, showing to all their strength as a couple. On each end of the saw, David and Lina grab hold of the two-handled saw blade and began cutting through the log like skilled lumberjacks. David and Lina giggled watching the shocked faces of their guests staring at them wide eyed in amazement at how the young couple sawed through the timber so easily, not knowing that they had been practicing for weeks at Lina’s parent’s cottage in preparation for the game.
There were many other games the bride, groom and guests would play for rest of the night. Many humorous ‘battle of the sexes’ type activities, then at midnight it was time to cut the cake. A German wedding tradition states that whomever has their hand on top of the knife during the slicing of the cake is the one who "wears the pants" in the family. Knowing this, David and Lina playfully fought over their hand positions on the knife. David, knowing he would have to accept it eventually, let Lina have the title hand position.
Acknowledging to all, that she would be the one to wear the pants in the family. The celebration went on into the wee hours of the morning, the guest slowly filters through the festivities and finally go home. Unfortunately for the bride and groom, consummation of the marriage would often have to wait until the following night due to shear exhaustion and horrendous hangovers. But this is not where the story begins.
Love cant conquer war, but can it survive one?
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