“It’s just past North River,” Leah said to me, as I loaded chairs into my car. “Just follow us.” And so I did. And the road kept going and I thought to myself that maybe there was another North River, because I was pretty sure I passed the sign for North River about 15 minutes ago. Jack’s signal went on and we turned left. And we turned left again. And then, right in front of me, was a photographer’s paradise. “What do you think? Is this a good place for pictures?” Leah asked me, hesitantly, as I’m sure the awestruck look on my face wasn’t conveying the look of pure excitement (and photo nerdiness!) that I was feeling. “Yah,” I smiled, “I think this will do.” An old farm house, now vacant, sat directly in front of me. To my left was the front yard, covered in dandelions. Jack apologized, “I didn’t get a chance to mow before you came, I’m really sorry.” I told him it was perfect. To my right was a weathered red barn and just behind that, a path that lead to fields that hadn’t been grazed on in years. This was Jack’s family’s old farm. It hadn’t been worked or lived on in a long time, but it was a perfect spot to photograph new love. I grabbed my bag and we started down the path. They laughed and smiled and kissed and snuggled. They held hands and held each other close. I got to see it first hand, exactly what everyone had said- they were perfect for each other.
Despite knowing Leah longer, I always say Jack’s name first when referring to the two of them. It flows perfectly. It just fits. Just like everything about them. They’re getting married in the town that brought them together and the town that they’ll stay together in. A community that took great care and great pride in raising two fabulous people will get to share in their love next July. And then the year after that, at the very end of June when everyone in Brookfield flips the page on their calendar, “♥ Jack and Leah Roop” will be nestled in there, exactly one week into July, exactly where and how and when they were always meant to be.