Team McLeod : Down at The Top

The Top. A well-known Gainesville hot spot downtown, this restaurant/bar has been the site of many celebrations past. Both our 21st birthday's and Meggan's 21st were held here, the goodbye brunch sending Rachel and Kara off to move from Gainesville to NYC, countless dinners with Anna gabbing about wedding planning... I could go on.

Really all that mattered in the end was that it was clean, cool and big enough to fit us all. They also have a photobooth which sealed the deal.

The youngest guest at our wedding was baby Havana (the cutest happiest baby I've ever met) with the next oldest being at least 14. We didn't have too many kids at the wedding, but I still made sure to clearly state that the after party was for 21+ only. I would have hated for any of them to come just to be turned away at the door.

The bridesmaids headed over to the bar with Djamel right after the wedding was over. I don't think it took us more than half an hour to finish up at the Thomas Center and home. The walk down felt like it took forever though, I just wanted to get there! Besides, I had an entourage waiting for me out front.
Pay no attention to the jaywalking happening in this photograph.
YEAHHHH - let's party.
I know you! Hey door man, my wedding dress is my ID. Just kidding - you can't really get away with that in Gainesville.
Photobooth love. I had a hard time acting all excited in these photos. I think I would have had more fun if all the girls were piled in there with me.

And the husband arrives! Husband!! He and most of the groomsmen opted to change out of their rented tuxes back at the house. I don't blame him for not wanting to ruin clothing he didn't technically own, even if he looked damn good.
Someone had grabbed a big table by the door and I made a point to park it right by the entrance. If you were coming to hang out I wanted to make sure I saw you and got to say hello. I had been on my feet for so long already that day and all I wanted to do was sit and sip on a gin and tonic.
Sagar kept his tux but added his own jacket. The best suit jacket I've ever seen.

The whole after party was so much fun. We had our corner of the inside and eventually spilled out onto the porch too. I probably could have made more rounds to spend time with everyone but I really just wanted to sit and let them come to me.

The roommates. Awwwwww.
That's more like it.
The best shot of my shoes all day. You can really see the poof that bubble hem added to the dress.
We had strangers coming up to us and congratulating us all night! At one point two generous folks came up and offered up some shots! Later we found out that they are actually the owners of The Top - two really rad people who were so happy to have us that night!
They should be happy! I don't want to think about how much was spent on drinks and sweet potato fries that night.Collin spent some time catching up with Kevin at the end of the night.

See? I'm still in that same chair. This is the photo we chose to close our album. It sums up the end of the night perfectly; talking with friends in a bar, arms around each other and new rings on our left hands.
The bar was open for another hour when we decided to take off. It was time for Djamel to get going (he'd stayed well beyond our contract to hang out with us and keep shooting) and a nameless bridesmaid was way too drunk and hitting on one of the groomsmen. We said some long goodbyes and went back out into the street. There we stopped to say hello and goodbye to our many friends who'd made their way over to the Atlantic for the Joy Division/New Order cover show that was going on. I even posed for pictures with a few random guys who were visiting Gainesville for the first time - I'm pretty sure I made their night.

Inspired, Djamel asked us for one last shot. When he told us his idea, how could I object?
Goodnight Gainesville. Downtown, we love you so. Thanks for giving us gorgeous weather, a beautiful historic site and cheerful strangers on our wedding day.

We walked back to the house holding hands and broke out the leftovers as soon as we got in. We turned on the TV to find the wedding scene of one of our favorite movies while I took out the hundred bobby pins and brushed the hairsprayed nest that was my hair as I sat perched on the edge of our bed. It was the perfect quiet end to a glorious day; in our home with our cat we were husband and wife.