Vows: A Posh Love Affair

Monday, June 11, 2018

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Posh was the venue. St Louis deejay James Gates was spinning. In walked photographer Halima Martin. The journey to the altar would follow 11 years later in Jamaica on Saturday, June 3, 2018 at the Laughing Waters Villa, Ocho Rios.

How they met… (Halima's version)

We met through a mutual friend, Shaquila, on Friday, March 9, 2007 at the Posh nightclub. I was in St Louis visiting family for the weekend from Carbondale, Illinois, where I lived. My friend Shaquila convinced me to accompany her to a session. I reluctantly agreed. The party was a flop with a mere 10 people, including the DJ. She suggested that we head to the Central West End to a venue called Posh. It was here that Shaquila introduced me to James (the DJ) and his friend Veto. “Hey Halima from Carbondale,” was how James greeted me. I was taken aback but reckoned my gal pal had told him my name. He was cute, so I reckoned a little small talk would not hurt. In fact, I went as far as requesting a Dixie Chicks song. James declined the Dixie Chicks request, not because he didn't like them, he said, but because it would not be the right fit. He flashed a gorgeous smile. I have to confess... my interest was piqued.

We talked for a bit. James then asked if Shaquila and I would be heading to the after-party later at Halo.

Shaquila said she wasn't sure, though, upon leaving Posh, she mentioned to me that James had expressed an interest in me and had asked several questions about me. I caught my second wind! I was 100 per cent sure we were going to the next party because I was determined to dance with him.

His version

The evening of March 9, 2007 was shaping up to be a regular Friday night. I was all set to pay a special tribute to The Notorious BIG during a party at which I was playing, at Posh in the Central West End, St Louis. The crowd was forming nicely and my friend Veto was there hanging with me, as per usual. We were there talking while I was mixing and all of a sudden, I saw my friend Shaquila come through the door with a girl I'd never seen before. I remember immediately thinking she was really cute, that she looked a bit like Kerry Washington. I was 30 years old at the time and I thought she was close to 22 or 23 years old. Anyway, Shaquila came to the DJ booth to say hi to Veto and me, so I took the opportunity to ask her about her friend. I got her name and location — Halima from Carbondale. We finally talked when she felt the need to make a request for The Dixie Chicks. So after that request was denied, we talked some more and I became intrigued. Turned out, much to my delight, she was 27 years old but definitely not a night owl — as Shaquila basically had to twist her arm to come out with her that night. I'm pretty thankful she gave in though!

The proposal...

took place on Wednesday, March 9, 2016. I was joining James at Posh on the Central West End. He was wearing a tie. When I inquired why he was wearing one, he told me that we were going out for dinner. Still, it didn't make sense that he needed a tie for dinner at a pizza place. So, I decided to step it up a bit and put on a little lip gloss since it was Wednesday and I had just completed a long workday. Once we were seated, we started having random, non-romantic conversation about life until James reminded me that we are sitting in the same place where we laid eyes on each other nine years ago. Then it all made sense! That's why he had on a tie! I was glad that I had put on some lip gloss and didn't push for takeout. I still had no idea of what was to come. Imagine my shock when later, James got down on one knee. I didn't know what was happening! Of course, after I collected myself, the answer was, 'Yes!'

The ceremony

The exchange of vows took place on the lawns at the Laughing Waters Villa, Ocho Rios, where the theme was rustic romance. The team from Bridal Dreams Jamaica, used shades of peach and blush pink with a profusion of greenery and burlap. Halima looked gorgeous in an ivory lace gown complete with sweetheart neckline and adorned with a bejewelled belt. At the altar stood the handsome bridegroom, dressed in coral pants, grey jacket and white shirt with navy blue tie. The ceremony was officiated by Pastor Damion Austin.

The reception

The reception featured the presentation of the newly-weds accompanied by their bridal party. The evening continued with the reveal of their House of Cake - A Mighty Fine Thing three-tiered naked Baileys cake and a hearty reception dinner catered by Elements of Beauty Catering.

The couple honeymooned at Hotel Riu Ocho Rios.

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