Monday, July 4, 2016

Chapter 35

"Ohhhh!  How wonderful!"  cried Natie.

"That's great!"  said Johnny Rossi.  "What made you decide on a double?"

"Well, both of us want to get married next year, and neither of us is willing to give up early September, so we decided it would be a good idea, and save money, if we both get married on the same day, and have our reception in the same place.  The only differences would be some of our friends, and Eddie and Connor's families.  I mean, it would all be the same relatives on our side, so that's saving half right there..."

"What are you worried about saving money for?  It's mom's and my responsibility and pleasure to pay for your weddings."  Johnny countered.

"Well, you already had Gia and Rene's, and they were lovely, truly."  Said Terri.

"And ours will be just as lovely, except we'll be having ours on the same day."  Carmie added.

"And Carm and I are going to pay for our own wedding dresses and bridesmaids dresses."

"Whoa, what's going on here.  Did someone say we were having financial problems or something?  Because we're not."  Johnny protested.

"Well, noooo," Terri said uncertainly.

"What's going on?" Natie asked in a no nonsense tone.

"It's just that the only place that can hold our entire bridal party and all our guests on the day and year we want is the Elk's Hall."  Carmie said, a look of trepidation on her face as she stood in expectation of her parent's reactions.

"Why didn't you say something sooner!?"  Johnny asked, suddenly delighted.  "I belong to the Elks; I can get a discount.  Did you already get the day and date in writing?"

"Yes?"  Carmie asked, suddenly hopeful, since she and Terri and their fiancés had already made plans to pay for at least half the cost.  The girls knew that their parents wouldn't have said no, no matter what, but they didn't want them to bear the entire brunt of the cost, since both Eddie and Connor's families and friends would also be in the mix.

"Excellent, let me call Mule and..."

"Mule?"  the women asked at once.

"Samuel Barkis, he's in charge of scheduling at the club.  I'm surprised he saw the name Rossi and didn't call me." he said, frowning in confusion.

"We had to put the reservations in Eddie and Connor's names."  Terri said.

"Why?"  her parents asked in tandem.

"Because they're the grooms.  At least that's how I understood it."  Carmie said.

"Hmmm, so does that mean that the grooms are going to pay for the whole shebang?"  asked Johnny archly.

"Well, the guys had offered to pay half and they put the deposit down, so that could be why." Terri said, worried at her parent's reactions.

Natie and Johnny looked at each other and matching arched eyebrows.  They had no idea why they should be surprised. It had been worse when they'd been planning their wedding and no one would so much as put down a tentative reservation when Natie called somewhere without Johnny's or her father's OK.  They'd only hoped that by the time they had children old enough to be married that things would have changed.  Maybe it was only because they put down the deposit.  Johnny Rossi decided to give good ol' Mule a call and find out what the story was.

"I'm just curious, Terri," Johnny said, looking at his oldest daughter still living with him, "Why didn't you tell us this at dinner when everyone would be here?"

Carmie laughed, "Can you imagine everyone spitting out food or their drinks when we told them?  Or choking?"  she tried not to laugh.

"That, young lady... or should I say, young ladies... is why you tell people, 'Before we eat we'd like to make an announcement...'  hmmm?" Johnny asked, smelling deception in the air.

Terri grinned and said, "You caught us dad.  We told you and mom first for two reasons.   One, what if you'd said no to one or both of us.  Doing it this way saved a lot of drama at the table if you had, right?"

Johnny and Natie reluctantly nodded, and Johnny gestured for them to continue.

"And two, we didn't want to get into a discussion about the finances in front of the guys.  It would take about two minutes for Con to call the neighborhood and tell them how much everything is going to cost.  I know how much you dislike people gossiping about money."

"Yep," Johnny agreed, "We got enough of that when we had a second phone line put in.  A double wedding is going to set tongues wagging as it is."  he grinned.  "For all I know people will be coming up and offering donations, thinking we're hard up."  he laughed.

"Did you already start to look for dresses?  I know a beautiful place just across town, Delilah's, that does beautiful work and the people are so nice.  I've been there for my dresses for Gia and Rene's weddings.

"Oh mamma, that would be perfect.  Didn't Gia get hers there too?"    

"Yes, and Rene wore mine since we're more of a size.  Carmie, you're more my size also, do you want to use my dress too, or have your own?"

"Mamma, I think your dress is beautiful, but I'd like my own," Carmella said, afraid she'd hurt her mother's feelings.

"Nonsense, my little sweetie, don't you worry.  Every bride should have the dress she wants." she reassured her daughter with a hug.  "You will let me at least watch while you try them on?" Natie asked.

The girls both knew that if their mother 'watched' then she would have something to say, but how could they say no to her.  "Of course mamma."  they said together.

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