Sunday August 10 2014

We dated for ten months

 Mr and Mrs Firtz after exchanging

Mr and Mrs Firtz after exchanging vows. Courtesy photo 

By Agatha Muhaise

How did you meet?
Angella: I met Andrew through a friend in May last year. He had come from USA to Uganda for his study research last year. I was at MUBS in my third year.

Did he propose?
Angella: Yes, he did on January 5, this year. He had just returned from the US. We used to stay together and he asked me to go for a dinner date. While eating, he paused and pulled out a box that contained a ring and asked, “Will you marry me?” I was shocked and asked him, “Is this real?” I cried and accepted. In the same month, he met my parents.

How did you know that this was the person you wanted to marry?
Angella: Andrew is honest, loving and very handsome. He loves me unconditionally and that is the kind of person I always dreamed of marrying.

Andrew: I never believed in love at first sight until I met Angella. Over anything else, she is honest. I know she loves me more than money, gifts or any other material thing. When a woman is always asking for material things, she is more concerned with money than love. That is definitely not Angella. And right away, I knew I had to have her as my wife.

How did your parents react to the news of marriage?
Angella: We had been dating for almost a year. My parents, especially my mother, was so happy. She had always been supportive and gave me advice to help me be a caring and loving wife in future.
Andrew: My family was happy, but could not come over due to prior obligations. So, we are going to have a church wedding in the US to get them involved.

Did you have a bachelorette or stag party?
Angella: Yes, I had a bachelorette party at Big Mike’s and it was very interesting and we had much fun with of dancing and drinks.

Andrew: I did. I moved around Kampala City (read pub crawling) causing just enough trouble to stumble home with my brother- in-law the next day in the morning.

Who funded the wedding?
Angella: Andrew and his family funded everything. And, I really thank God for everything they have done.
Andrew (interjects): I did it because I love her to bits.

How much was the wedding fees?
Angella: I had to get a letter of introduction from the LC Chairperson and some other paper work, then pay URA but all together we spent Shs200,000.

How much was your budget?
Angella: Our budget was Shs20m, and we never went beyond it.

Tell us about your entourage
Angella: I didn’t have the traditional bridesmaids, groomsmen and flower girl. Actually we did not need them. It was just us and the witnesses (my cousin and brother) because it was a civil wedding.

Did your parents attend the ceremony?
Angella: They only needed four people. Us and the witnesses. My father is deceased, but my mother came for the reception.

Why did you opt for a civil wedding?
Firtz: Our plan had always been to do a civil wedding here and a church wedding in the US. More so, my parents were not as ready since there were some travel issues.

What did it take to do a civil wedding?
Angella: You need to register with the district and there is a lot of paperwork. One fills in several forms which take a lot of time. In Kampala, you can get everything from Amamu House.

Where did the wedding take place?
Angella: The wedding ceremony took place at the district offices. That is where all civil marriages are conducted.

Since you were marrying an American, wasn’t there drama with the authorities?
Angella: There was no drama or longer procedures even though Andrew is American.

What type of wedding are you going to in the USA?
Angella: We will do a church wedding. I will take my mother along and maybe a few other family members and Andrew’s family and friends.

What was your best moment of the day?
Angella: My favourite moment was when Andrew put a ring on my finger, it was amazing. It is the moment when you know it is a life commitment.
Andrew: My best moment of the day was putting the ring on her finger. It marked the fact that we shall stay forever committed.

How did the function go?
Angella: Everything was just perfect except that some people couldn’t make it since they were coming from distant places.

Where was your honeymoon?
Angella: We had a short honeymoon in different places in Jinja and western Uganda since we are both students.
In Jinja, we went to Wild Waters Lodge and River Nile. In western Uganda, we went to Queen Elizabeth National Park and Murchison Falls. After school, we plan to go to Hawaii for more fun and sun.

How much were the rings?
Angella: We paid about $600 (about Shs 1.5m) for both wedding rings, but I never asked Andrew how much the engagement ring cost.

Any challenges?
Angella: I had to rush everything since Andrew’s visa was expiring soon. Then my mother had gone to work and the Marriage registrar had travel plans which coincided with our date of marriage. So we had to reschedule.

I did not do adequate preparations like other people do. All was between my husband and I to just do something simple and small.
Andrew: My visa was going to expire before the proposed marriage date. We had to shift it to March. Quite intensive. My parents did not attend because of the summer holiday.

What is the biggest change you have noticed since you got married?
Angella: The biggest change I have noticed is that Andrew loves me more each day and I also love him more and more each day. It’s like our love is growing even faster since marriage.
Andrew: I feel more respectful of my wife, I love her more and I’m devoted to her.

What is your advice to the single people?
Angella: Single ladies should always have hope, follow your heart and believe that true love exists.
Andrew: Make sure you are marrying for love, and not some other reason. You are going to spend your life with that person. Look for a woman who loves you for who you are, not who she wants you to be.