I'd already been working on a cookbook combining innovations in vegan cooking with wild ingredients, and Leslie, whose mother is Turkish, had years of experience with Turkish cuisine. So we cooked up a storm of traditional style vegan Turkish dishes with wild ingredients.
Leslie and I bought a co-op apartment in Westchester County, NY, late in 2001, then planned our wedding. It took place in Glen Island Park in New Rochelle, Westchester, NY. The scenic location in the Long Island Sound was special to me because I'm along-time jazz fan, and one of the first albums in my tape collection was recorded live on Glen Island by Glen Miller in the 1940s.
The weather posed a problem, as it had been raining for days and there was a chance of heavy showers. It rained most of the morning before the noon wedding and later on the way to the reception, but before we arrived the weather cleared up, and it was perfect during the ceremony.
We had expected to pick mulberries (in season at that time) for the guests from ubiquitous trees, but there were none to be found. Instead, we found a bumper crop of juneberries that everyone loved. Friends and family sampled wild purslane, wood sorrel, and poor man's pepper from the grounds. A caterer also served great-tasting vegan appetizers.
We then carpooled to our favorite restaurant, Buddha Bodai, for the reception. The feast of vegan Chinese food was outstanding. A traditional jazz combo performed at the wedding and reception, and I got to jam with them playing the Brillophone, an instrument I create by clapping cupped hands in front of my mouth, which serves as an echo chamber.
We honeymooned at Blue Mountain Lake in the Adirondacks. We swam in the lake, canoed, hiked up a mountain, visited the local historical museum, and had a wonderful time.