It seems that once you hit your mid-twenties, summers spent lazing on the beach, frolicking in the lake and sipping gin and tonics on the porch become punctuated with the ever-increasing burden of going to weddings.
Quite frankly, Im getting a little fed up of giving up my weekends camping to be in a stuffy dress, making stuffy small talk and stuffing my feet into high heels.
Its not that I dont enjoy seeing friends and family declare their love for one another.
Its just that summer weekends are precious.
And more importantly, I just cant afford the sheer expense that most weddings these days entail.
My closest friends, my cousins, girls I havent spoken to since high school, and my boyfriends friends are all putting me in the poor house.
And its only going to get worse as more and more friends and family fall in love and get the itch to tie the knot.
It all starts off with that one little innocent phone call.
On one end of the line is giddiness and desperation to share the news in minute details of how the proposal all came about.
Meanwhile, on the end, you take a fleeting glance at VISA statements, overdue loans and a pitiful balance. Its obvious that the balance is already buckling under the too heavy load of trying to eke out a meagre existence of some simple food and shelter and maybe some new snowboarding gear for the coming season.
From that first phone call comes the never-ending stream of expenses.
First theres the engagement card and present (usually this only happens if Im organized enough).
Then theres the shower present (hopefully youre only required to go to one) followed by the gifts for the hen night, including something suitably raunchy and embarrassing for the bride-to-be. Then all you have left to buy is the actual wedding present.
Wait, thats not all.
As the "big day" draws closer you usually have to figure out some way of getting to the wedding. This, more often than not, involves a plane ride.
And etiquette demands you cant wear the same dress to weddings with the same group of people.
The new outfit, complete with heels, bag, nylons and sometimes a hat, can be recycled, thankfully, among different groups of friends.
I was recently sporting a very recycled dress (its seen six weddings to date, none with overlapping guests) at a wedding in Ontario.
Gallons of alcohol were consumed. Plates were scraped clean of elegant meals. The bridesmaids dresses had their moment of glory; their one day in the sun, knowing all too well that their fate lay at the back of some spare room closet.