A Welcome Back to San Diego Wedding – Erin & Mike’s Beach Wedding

Swami's Beach Wedding

Wow… It has really been a very eventful couple of weeks.

  • My divorce to Heather became finalized on July 15th, which was to be our 2 year anniversary.
  • My week long trip to San Diego for my birthday became a moving trip in the Nth hour.
  • And on my drive out, I climbed the 12,000 ft Sierra Blanca in New Mexico which turned out to be the most physically challenging thing I have ever done.

And upon arrival, my dear friend, Marne, had arranged for me to photograph two of the most warm spirited and incredible people, as they came together as man and wife during a very intimate ceremony at Swami’s Beach in Encinitas.

Erin and Mike are two of the coolest people I have met. Both incredibly warm souls that wanted most to share their union with their closest friends and family before they moved back to Europe. Their ceremony was led by their yoga instructor, Tim from the Ashtanga Yoga Center in Carlsbad, who spoke about Ashtanga as having eight limbs to master, but in his own philosophy, marriage was like a ninth limb, in that it was above and beyond all that was needed or desired to be achieved during our time on this planet.
The thirty or so witnesses gathered in a semi circle facing the beach, listening to Tim’s delivery in deep thought, and then to Erin and Mike share their vows to each other, with emotion and happiness.

One of my favorite moments of the entire day was after the ceremony, as Erin and Mike walked towards the point alone, I snuck up behind them and popped a couple shots off. It was then that I noticed a tandem surfing couple take off on a wave, and as the man lifted his partner, the significance of man and woman as partners came to life in a visual metaphor right in front of me. The male surfer held his partner at chest height just as she swept her body up into a swan dive position. I grabbed the shot, while the newlyweds in front of me looked on. It was one of those gifts from the higher powers. I’ve included a photo above, if you look at the inset, you can make out the dark figures riding the wave with the woman’s arms and legs pointing up to the line on the horizon.

At the reception Erin and Mike were reunited with everyone to enjoy Peruvian and South American food and wine at Casa Q’ero in Leucadia. The night lasted until 11pm when they cut their vegan carrot cake.

Mike and Erin, thank you for allowing me to share such a beautiful time with you, your family and your friends. Congratulations and I wish you only happiness, strength and flexibility in your journey of the Ninth Limb, aka Marriage.

And a big thanks to Patrick and April at Casa Q’ero for making sure I was fed and hydrated, and to the rest of the staff also, for tolerating me and my camera in the kitchen.

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