As promised, this is the super-long post about our ROM (Registry Of Marriage) day. If you're a relative or friend (local or overseas), we regret that you cannot be with us that day (although we promise the customary wedding in a year's time would be a bigger occasion and hopefully many more friends and loved ones can join us then) but we'd like to use this post to share with you our joy on this special day :)
Our glass-top "love boat" :)
Anyway, the day started off early with Eric Ong (thank you sooo much for "kenna arrowed" as the driver of the day) picking up Tammy (with her best friend Hui Qin) and then me before making our way to the boat (parked at the Clarke Quay Jetty) where the ROM ceremony would be held. Most of decorations (butterflies, deco for the poles, rose petals etc) have been prepared beforehand. Fortunately Sally and my 2 younger brothers (Sam & Patrick) came down early to help out with the decorations (thank you soo much guys!). Sam, being Sam, kept entangling the butterflies but somehow we managed to put them all up in time. The chairs they gave us looks 10 times worse than what they looked in the picture the boat company sent us originally. Fortunately, Sally made some last-minute deco changes by cutting apart the dining cloth we bought and actually made the chairs look much more presentable!
Tammy's dad made the blue board in the background, while "stupid" (the yellow duck) sat patiently on our signing table.
Patrick, the DJ, setting up his gig with my Powerbook...
Anyways, Tammy needed to rush off for her make-up/hair-do so the rest of us finished up the job by around 10:30. After which, Eric Ong and me drove to Esplanade (where we'd have our lunch after the boat ride along Singapore River) to park the car there while Sally and Hui Qin joined Tammy and went about their "girly thing" (I think Sam and Patrick were slacking around somewhere in Clarke Quay).
By the time both of us made it back to the jetty, my folks were already waiting. We thought we had some time left to chill so we decided to get some coffee at the TCC near the jetty, but before we knew it, all the other relatives started showing up! And before long Chongjye (who's my buddy from OCS as well as Michigan days) and Yaohui (Tammy's friend who's a great photographer and helped take many pictures shown in this blog post! Check out his pictures here!) were also here. So we basically had around 15 people hanging around one small table in TCC with only 2 or 3 drink ordered :P
My dad and Patrick chilling at TCC while waiting for the boat boarding time.
And the lady is finally in da house!
The folks settling down in the boat.
One of the butterflies deco we put up in the boat.
My folks checking out the custom-made fans we made, on which we wrote personal messages for each of our guests (credit to Tammy for her idea~)
Eric Ong chilling out after all the driving about in the morning...
My folks looking good in this picture taken by Yaohui~
Yaohui, Mum, Dad, Gong Gong, Yeh Yeh, Gu Po...
Yeh Yeh writing his words of blessings for us on the Hello Kitty guestbook my dad got from Hong Kong.
Nicky joining in too~
And then Gong Gong...
My new "Father"'s turn...he's got one of the most artistic handwriting I've ever seen.
Me and my 2 buddies, Eric & Chungjye
Sam..obviously the guy who's "arrowed" to be the video camera man...
Mum & Nick.
Us, Nicky Ricky (btw, he's the youngest blogger I know!) and the oldies..
姑婆 looked on while 公公 set up his video camera...
Auntie Catherine taking a picture for us..
Yaohui...our main man with his camera..
Walking down the aisle:
And finally, with the arrival of Mrs Chia, our solemnizer (Justice of The Peace), Chungjye took the mic and started doing his emcee thing...and the boat started sailing along the Singapore River~
...while me and Tammy waited at the back, getting ready to walk down the rose-petaled aisle...
And we're finally in our positions...
Mrs Chia: "...face each other...hold each others' hands...look into each others' eyes...chung yeung, don't look at me..i'm married.." and I thought "No thanks Mrs Chia :p"
Saying "I Do!":
Mrs Chia: "I'm asking you now, Mr Cho Chung Yeung, do you take this lovely woman here, Tammy, to be your wedded wife, to live together in the legal estate of matrimony. Will you love her, comfort her, honor her, keep her, in sickness and in health, forsaking all others; be faithful to her, so long as you both shall live?"
Me: "Yes, I DO!"
Mrs Chia: "..Tammy, do you take this handsome young man to be your wedded husband, to live together in the legal estate of matrimony. Will you love him, comfort him, honor him, keep him, in sickness and in health, forsaking all others, be faithful to him, so long as you both shall live?"
Tammy: "Yes I will!"
Taking our vows:
This is to me the most important part of the whole ceremony because it is the most personal and intimate confession of love for one another, something that the regular "I DO" questions don't really provide. Anyway here goes:
Me and Tammy making our personal vows. Pls pardon my bro, Sam, for making the ultimate sin in handling of the video camera (by turning the camera from landscape to portrait and back!)
And here's my vow:
"Tammy, you know that I’ve been a really lucky guy all my life. Things go easy for me. But out of all my blessings, you are truly, truly the most precious gift that God’s given me, and I thank him so much for bringing you into my life.
I remember vividly those Hai Sing days when I was supposed to go to your house to give you Math tuition but instead ended up singing folk songs. You were bad at Math then and you are still horrible at it now. But in many ways, you’re still the same girl whom I fell in love with more than 11 years ago. The way you smile, the way you care for others, the way your eyes brighten up whenever you see me, the way you look after me; these are things that, till this day, still makes me feel like falling in love with you all over again.
Tammy, I’m so glad that we are able to go through so many things together in the past. We have code names like Boat Quay night, Fullerton night, Karaoke night; we invented the annual renewable engagement scheme and we emerged from our 3-year long distance relationship a much stronger couple; we’ve traveled the world together, Cambodia, Hong Kong, San Francisco, Riva del Garda and many other places; we had the most romantic times in Ann Arbor and of course who can forget those amazing one and a half year in Berkeley and San Francisco, fetching you from the BART station before getting our late-night dinner from Thai Noodle!
I think I could probably spend days just listing through all the great experiences I had with you by my side. There were many good times and some bad times, and today, as we take our vows, I want to tell you that, from the bottom of my heart, I want to be there beside you till death do us apart, through the good times, and especially the bad times; I want to be there to share with you every moment of joy, of sorrow. I want to take good care of you and shower you with love everyday. I want to learn new things with you and from you. I guess you could also keep learning math from me, if you want. But basically, what I’m saying is, I love you and I want to share the rest of my life with you.
Tammy, you know you’re the inspiration behind many of the songs I wrote. But I guess I never told you that I intended to sing you this song during our wedding when I first wrote this. So here goes:
‘Cos you’ve got me, and I’ve got you
That makes the most beautiful song
‘Cos this love is 10 years in the making
And I can’t wait for more
I’d be your boy for this chance of a life time
I’d be your boy everyday
I’d be your boy for this love’s over-flowing
I’d be you boy everyday of our lives
"You wrote this song for me more than 10 yrs ago. Unfortunately, I didn't appreciate it then. But thankfully, I do now & every word you wrote clearly expresses the way I feel & the way I'll always feel. So I'll let this song be my binding vow to you...
我看著你 你看著我 多麼滿足
And with this ring, I now marry you"
Me putting the ring on her fourth finger..
And then Tammy's turn to put the ring on my fourth finger...
Mrs Chia looking at Tammy's reaction as I "deliver" my vow...
I think she's quite "lum" by my vow...hee :)
Mrs Chia giving me a pat on the back for encouragement...
Me continuing with my long vow..
"...You may kiss the bride.." Muaks!
Signing the documents:
Putting my signature down...
While my dad signed on as witness...
Same for "Father"...
I'm assuming Mrs Chia is cracking another joke in this one...
Receiving our ROM cert~
My mum looks on approvingly.
"...I now present to you, Mr and Mrs Cho..." Yay!