#WERealWeddings featuring the story of one of the wedding industry’s seasoned photographers, Dino Lara and now bride, Karen Sarte. (Words Dino Lara | Photography Metrophoto)
“Sagutin mo na ako, liligawan naman kita habangbuhay”
This is the question I expressed to Karen back in mid 2014 in a semi-impatient tone. Having an age gap of 17 years and a match that happened only on Tinder, my words are likely not to be taken seriously. But I am serious, and it has been our vow ever since. A vow to nourish and cherish our mundane moments together at every break of dawn and until we go to sleep.
After 6 years, we decided that we no longer want to be seen by the Republic as two individuals with kids but as one family which is the basic unit of our society.
Since we want to be recognized as a family, it dictated the succeeding events which is to get married at city hall. The older kids, Ansel and Jad, rode with us to Dean and Deluca to get breakfast with Karen’s best friends.
With the ongoing pandemic, we were only allowed to bring two witnesses and one photographer. And while we have all the access to the best wedding suppliers, we opted not to take advantage of it this time, mainly because of COVID restrictions. Fortunately, my good friend, Erron insisted I can’t get married without someone documenting the day, which I find very endearing.
Our entourage shuffled its way to the heart of Makati City Hall and fell in line to submit health declarations and secure a permit to enter. We were to be married by Judge Sulit at the 10th floor courtroom. Since I’m uncomfortable with elevators, I have always opted for stairs even before the pandemic and this wedding is not an exception. Our small entourage willingly joined me and Karen, and instead of the usual walking down the aisle, we had one-of-a-kind climbing up the stairs as our entrance to the court. Our blended family is now soon to be recognized as one.
The Court did not require us anything but a pair of rings. When the time came, Karen and I exchanged wedding rings and said our vows in the presence of the court and our witnesses.
Being a wedding photographer for more than two decades, I have witnessed thousands of weddings on all levels. I have been known to favor black and whites highlighting the emotions, the mood, and the moments. We’re happy to have seen them in our wedding photos.
The succeeding days were dedicated to house-hopping to our immediate families and friends. Think table-hopping with more time per table.
With our family now combined as one, Karen and I will continue celebrating our eternal vows – renewed at every cup of specially prepared coffee during breakfast. Our promise to each other — “Magliligawan kami habang buhay.”