Sunday, October 09, 2011

Getting married in Osaka

Yesterday I got an email from the organisers of the 2011 Osaka Marathon, asking if I wanted to get married after I've run the race.

Well, it wasn't actually the organisers. They were asking on behalf of Kansai University and the Kinki Nippon Tourist Company, who have arranged a traditional marriage ceremony for one lucky couple, to take place on the day of the marathon.

Not just any-old traditional marriage ceremony, mind. This would have cheerleaders from Kansai U, a special booth at the Osaka Intex Conference Centre1, and 200,000 yen to cover travel expenses.

It's a shame I'm already married, really. I wonder quite how large the population of people who have signed up for the Osaka Marathon, and fancy getting married while drenched in sweat and exhausted from running 42.195 kilometres, actually is. And of those, how many are eligible?

And if you were thinking of getting married, is it the sign of a sound foundation to make a decision about when to have it based partly on the Kinki Nippon Tourist Company's big bag of cash, and partly because you want to have university kids waving pom-poms while you say your vows?

No sillier than getting married on a boat in the middle of a typhoon, I suppose, and I guess spur-of-the-moment decisions involving lycra singlets and wedding veils may be more defensible than choosing six months' out to get married in what's likely to be a torrent of rain and wind.

Still, I don't regret the wedding I had. It's not like anyone drowned or got eaten by a shark, after all. If I had tried to get married after a marathon, I'd probably be incapable of speech, have sick on my shoes and be wrapped in a silver blanket, none of which screams romance. I just hope I finish my race in time to see the happy couple getting spliced.

1 I just love conference centres, and can't think of a more romantic location for a wedding.


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