Meet Zina, our new daughter! She and Justin joined themselves with a kiss on August 7 in Joaquin Miller park. The weather was fantastic, the gathered community was supportive, and the love flowed freely. I still think about that day each morning when I wake up and catch myself giggling with happiness whenever Zina calls me “dad.”
The day started with a flurry of activity as family and friends shuttled dishes, food, decorations and selves up to the park to prepare for the celebration. Zina’s family had prepared several large trays of roasted lamb, and biryani. Anna, Sonja, Janice, Sarah, Pam, Carrie, Zina, Justin, and I had spent the previous day arranging flowers, preparing salads, making hummus and pesto. All the goodies were shipped to the park and then a little before noon Justin, Nate, and I dressed at my folks. J & N drove up to the park in one car and I picked up Zina and her sisters and we drove up to meet them.
There were goats grazing on the hillside near the cascades where the ceremony was to take place. The crowd had gathered at the bottom of the hill. Zina’s cousin Zina and our niece Kjerstin flung rose petals on the stairs flanking the gurgling cascade as Justin and Zina walked to meet each other to the strains of Al Greene’s Let’s Live Together.
The ceremony was short and sweet, punctuated by words of wisdom from Buckminster Fuller, Albert Einstein, James Joyce, the Song of Solomon, Chuck Palahniuk, and Shel Silverstein. The reception continued until dusk. It was a great day.
Thanks to cousin Larry Hogle and my buddy Casey Daley for the photos on this page.