Monday, April 04, 2005


I had not heard from the mysterious Miss Rhodes for many months, when one fine Spring afternoon, after repairing to my office on Shipley cliffs, I discovered a large package waiting for me in my inventory.

"Halloa!" I exclaimed, startled. "Here's a package! Let's open it!"

But the parcel was rather large, altogether too volumnious to rez in Shipley itself. So after some frustration, I located a nearby empty field beside a small pond, and placed the package on the ground at my feet.

In an instant, I found myself standing before several marvelous items, and what's more, discovered that fine articles of clothing had suddenly appeared in my inventory.

"Halloa! 'ere's a tuxedo! Let's put it on!"

And as fleet as a daydream, I was wearing elegant black tails, regaled as if I were aiming to attend a Czarina's ball. But my astonishment with these garments was eclipsed by an even more marvelous sight: a white Rolls Royce and the cutout of a proper chauffeur, standing before me in polite readiness.

"Halloa! 'ere's an automobile. Let's get in!"

And when I did, there was a flash of light and a whooshing of wind, and presently, the automobile and myself were transported bodily to a tiny island in the middle of the sea.

And glancing from a nearby window, I saw that the Rolls Royce was now poised at the foot of a sweeping red carpet, leading past trees made of crystal, then up the stairs and into a grand theater. All around the carpet were images of the cinema's greatest romantic pairings, and at the foot of the stairs stood the sculpture of a doorman, awaiting me in a poise of exquisite diffidence.

Above the entrance was a marquee, but instead of announcing the name of a motion picture soon to be seen, it announced the reason for the tuxedo, and the chaffeured automobile, the red carpet and the trees that glittered like diamonds.


"Destiny Bound"

The Wedding of Mash & Baccara

"Halloa!" I said. "'ere's a wedding. Let's attend it!"

And so I did.

And when the time came, guests arrived by the dozens to the theater dressed in their very finest, men and women, and a mermaid and merman, too, not to mention the cat and the cherub in a small white tudexo. For here was no mere wedding, but the betrothal of Mash Mandala, a fine gentleman, to Baccara Rhode herself, the storied wedding planner and event mistress who marshalled tributes to the works of Mr. JM Barrie and Mr. L. Frank Baum that had already entered into lore.

After the bride had made her stupendous entrance, a jolly, rotund minister named Athos Murphy made the invocation:

"The canopy above the couple represents their upcoming home," Athos rumbled. "The open sides, the hospitality they will provide. As you travel through life together, I caution you to remember that the true measure of success... the true avenue to joy and peace, is to be found within the love you hold in your hearts. I would ask that you hold the key to your heart very tightly."

Baccara turned to her husband to be, and offered her own words: "Mash," she began, "how can I say all that is in my heart? We have built a new life together. We love, giggle often, and create while enjoying our Second Lives in a gentle harmony I never expected to find. We have learned much from one another. May we always continue to do so." And then, "I came upon a quote that reads 'Marriage is the continuous process of getting used to things you never expected'. It is my belief that with you the future will be much like the last six months of being together; each bit of the unexpected will be more wonderful than the last."

Now it was the bald-pated gentleman's turn to speak.

"When I sat down to write my vows," Mash Mandala said in preamble, "I struggled, like I suppose many do in this situation, to find the words to express my love for you. I will laugh with you in times of joy and comfort you in times of sorrow. I will share in your dreams, and support you as you strive to achieve your goals. I will help you when you need it, and step aside when you don't. I promise to share hopes, thoughts and dreams as we build our lives together here." And at last, finished with these words, simply: "Thank you for being you and being a part of my Secondlife. I love you."

Athos Murphy initiated the vows, turning to Mandala: "Do you promise to love, honor, cherish and protect her, forsaking all others and holding only to her forevermore?"

"Does that include her shoe inventory?" Mash asked aloud, rakishly. Then quickly, "Yes."

And Baccara repeated the words of Reverend Murphy: "To have and to hold, in sickness and in health, for richer or for poorer... and I promise my love to you forevermore." Then added, vixenishly, "As long as you have a Gaming Open Market account."

"She really means it," Mandala shouted to the tittering audience.

When the vows were complete, members of the audience cried "Mazel Tov!" (for the betrothed were of the Jewish faith), and Mandala engaged a custom animation of crushing a wine glass beneath his feet.

Cheers rose up, and laughter, and the marriage party and their guests made their light-hearted way to the reception across a small bridge, where they were regaled by the fulsome voice of the American crooner Mr. Elvis Presley, and other romantic balladeers, as presented by the disc jockey Nexeus Fatale, especial for the occasion. As tradition demanded, bridge and groom danced the first dance of the night, and later on, devoured together the first slice of a towering cake. Before my depature, I picked out stampshady Grimm and Faerie Muse among the reception crowd, watching the newlyweds beneficently, and this was most fitting, for it was Baccara Rhodes who had once brought their own wedding to fruition.

"Everyone had a great time and danced the night away, thanks to Cristiano Midnight's new dances," Baccara told me later (for I had by necessity to leave early). "There is even a new couple dance called 'Stardust'. We are very honored."

I wondered about Nick Rhodes, the dashing French artist who once held her heart. Perhaps he had attended? Of him, Baccara said grandly, they "are forever friends. We always will be. We have chosen different paths. Nick isn't around much these days, but when he is, always checks in with me."

As for Mr. Mandala, she continued, "We initially met last year, when my friend madison Garder brought me to Mash's first store. I bought some cabinets and a sauna which kept 'spamming'. I had to Instant Message him to try to get the problem solved, and we have been friends ever since." Their friendship deepened to something more, when she and her friend Fey Brightfellow sought him out to help on a legendary project.

"Fey and I asked him to join Spellbound and work on Neverland because we admired his work so. It was during that time that we began to date," she told me. "Mash is one of the kindest, most generous, charming, talented, honest men I have ever come across in this or any world. Enough said?"

Indeed it is.

(With humble apologies to Dickens.)

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Such a beautiful couple, and wonderful contributors to the community of Second Life. I've been inspired ever since before I was inworld... great love story read, Ham!

Posted by: Torley at Apr 4, 2005 10:53:08 PM

BACCARA AND MASH deserve the best in sl since they have given there best to sl.
what comes around goes around.
what a great story for all to read.
baccara has always showed me how to give back and now she is getting what she has given LOVE.

Posted by: madison gardner at Apr 5, 2005 7:36:20 AM

Dear Hamlet,
Thank you for this lovely article about our recent wedding. It was such a special time for Mash and I, which we were happy to share with all our "Nearest & Dearest".

In addition, we so appreciate the wonderful comments made here by our friends. It is our pleasure to be part of Second Life. We only hope that we can truly contribute enough to show how much this experience means to us both.

With Love, Baccara

Posted by: Baccara Rhodes at Apr 5, 2005 8:23:19 AM

Congrats to Baccara and Mash... I wish that I coulod have shared in your big day, but was unable to... so please accept my warmest wishes for your happiness now and for always.

Bye bye for now,

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..........now thats a weddding!

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I was googling "astrin", my last name, as I am trying to do some genealogical research. This image keeps coming up, though I can find no text or information about what the connection is. Could anyone please enlighten me here?


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