Lana got married the other day. The lucky groom was her very close friend, Hugo.
Hugo and Lana have known each other from even before they were born. I met Hugo's mom while we were both in our first trimesters. We had virtually the same due date but Lana took her time making her grand entrance (not surprising in retrospect - that girl has been keeping me waiting ever since). Hugo is thirteen days older than Lana, something they never cease to talk about. The big age difference, that is.
Hugo's parents are Ben and Elizabeth. The four of us (Ben, Elizabeth, my Ben and I) thought the mirroring names were hilarious at first. Now we're so close and spend so much time together we pretty much forget about it until we're, as a group, introducing ourselves to new people. If I could choose a family for Lana to marry into, it would certainly be theirs.
Lana and Hugo have acted like a married couple for as long as they've know each other - or at least been aware enough to interact. They seem to be soul-mates - when they're together they're in their own world of make-believe. We hit the park and they are immediately off, only to be glimpsed occasionally traipsing among the trees, collecting leaves (cookies) or small stones (magic keys).
They also argue like a married couple. They are completely comfortable with each other and so their arguments lack polite distance. They don't disagree much but when they do it's frank. "No, Hugo, the fairy house is over HERE!" "I told you, Lana, that we can't begin the dance until all the babies have had their coffee!"
They have a similar sense of style and, perhaps more importantly, a shared fondness for style itself. They sport shag haircuts, skinny jeans and artfully distressed t-shirts. They're always ready to shoot their album cover.
I have a picture of them from when they were three, seated at a table at their pre-school. They have their hands folded on the empty table and are gazing at the camera calmly, almost royally. They look, for all the world, like their board meeting has been interrupted for a photo opportunity, a picture that will later be published in the shareholder's report. The two of them, individually and together, have that dignity and self-possession you might see in a self-made billionaire. They know themselves and like any good team, they know each other.
Finally, after their six year courtship, they were married a few days ago at the park. Elizabeth and I didn't find out about the wedding until that evening when we each got separate reports. The kids have decided that our upcoming shared vacation, a week at family camp in Yosemite, will be their honeymoon. I can think of worse.
Probably my favorite part about the whole thing is the way Lana describes it. Sometimes, with some words, she can be quite adult, while at other times you can hardly understand her for the baby talk. But when she talks of her marriage, she speaks of it with the respect it deserves.
"If Hugo and I ever did marry," she mused the other day, "I actually don't think we'd ever divorce."
How many six-year-olds use marry as an active verb? Let alone divorce?