The infamous Castle Street Party in Dunedin is to thank for my first encounter with Scott 11 years ago. I offered our couch to save him from sleeping on the floor of a friend’s house …and I can confirm that’s where he stayed! Scott bought me a box of chocolates to say thank you; I was well impressed. He backed up the gesture on our first official date one year later, when he brought my family a crayfish; impressed yet again. I remembered Scott as the “talented North Shore triathlete” from high school in Auckland when I was too scared to make eye contact; too cool! As we got to know each other, we shared a mutual love of nature, adventure and the outdoors.
We’ve shared many adventures: swimming with whales in Sri Lanka and following wild elephants in Nepal. We even endured three years in a long-distance relationship.
For the proposal, Scott created an all-day treasure hunt while summer camping. He handed me a piece of brown paper with burnt edges as the first clue. The hunt tested my endurance and my patience! I foraged and ate raw pipis, jumped off a bridge, navigated my way through false starts (intended by Scott of course) and climbed a mountain. He proposed over sunset with a beautiful loose rock diamond.
I took my revenge with a treasure hunt for him in Auckland on the day they were first due to marry in April 2020. Amongst many, Scott had to jump from a wharf and navigate to a high Maori Pa site in Castor Bay. Later, we held a zoom ‘wedding’ with all 130 global guests, MC, quizzes, speeches and a final DJ set. Nothing comes in halves! Our theme “One Lasting Adventure” was reflected with plenty of subtle nods to nature, from maps on our invites to personalized leather bag tags and “You Are Here” packs with personalised written notes for each of our guests.
I found our wedding venue on Instagram. The autumn colours in Wanaka were just beautiful and I had dreamed of an alpine outlook with a connection to the mountains. I also wanted a long walk down the ‘aisle’ for more drama and in the hope of extending that moment for as long as possible. The style was natural with a touch of luxury, using dried and alpine flowers, gypsophila and orchids. We incorporated lots of natural gold tones and textures for warmth.
As a surprise, we pulled our witnesses from a jar on the day. We also got dance lessons and after we cut the cake, danced through the dinner marquee.
On our flight to Wanaka, our names were announced and ‘Love is in the Air’ played. Everyone was given gold pom-poms as they danced up and down the aisles. My amazing mother secretly organised this flash mob with Air NZ.
My dress was bespoke Alma Wong from Alma J bridal boutique. I wanted to add an organza cape and a stiff organza overskirt to give me a different look from day to night. My three bridesmaids wore long-sleeved wrap dresses in a rust colour.
My most memorable moment of the day was seeing Scott for the first time. Also just before dinner, a red sunset appeared over the lake. The delayed dinner was worth the iPhone photoshoot.
We had a family honeymoon in Wanaka as my brother and uncle had quarantined from Australia. We hiked the Rob Roy glacier in the rain and rode three days of the Alps to Ocean cycle trail. After that, Scott and I had five nights together alone at Millbrook in Queenstown. A dream!
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