A Wine Country Wedding | Walla Walla, WA

Last month, I flew into the Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, picked up the keys to a white rental sedan, and drove 272 miles southeast to Walla Walla—through the Cascades, burned-out moonlike hillsides, wheat fields and hop farms—to attend the wedding of my wonderful college roommate, Kelsey. (And I took some pictures, too!)

There were many, many high points of this three-day trip, not least of which was finally getting to meet Kelsey’s now-husband Kai, and seeing how blissfully happy they were about the whole celebratory weekend, and about the beginning of their married life together. The lead-up to the wedding was filled with thoughtfully-planned and low-key events, like the wine-tasting extravaganza during which every disparate group of friends and family could meet each other and develop a fun, comfortable rapport. By the time the wedding started, we all felt like old friends.

And of course, there was the reunion with those true old friends. At the Walla Walla Best Western, I shared a room with my other first friends from college, Monica and Emily, and we proceeded to catch up on years of stories over Domino’s and, well, more wine. (I took their memory with me even after I left Walla Walla, since they’d drunkenly crumbled bouquets of dried lavender all over the backseat of my rental car. Love you guys!!) I don’t really have the words to describe how good it was to see them again; for now, suffice to say it was just the absolute best.

And then there were the countless other college friends and roommates we laughed and drank and danced with, from the bachelorette party right on through the wedding reception. I may have missed my five-year college reunion earlier this summer, but Kelsey and Kai’s wedding ended up being the best reunion I could’ve asked for.

To remember the gorgeous, hundred-degree, joy- and love-filled weekend, here are a few photos I took in the quiet moments before the guests arrived. I can’t imagine a better start to a life together.

Camera: Mamiya 645AF
Film: Kodak Portra 160